A COUNCILLOR is campaigning for a gap in the A40 to be reopened six years after it was closed to help traffic flow while emergency sewer works take place nearby.

Oxfordshire County Council closed off a gap in the A40 central reservation – one of only two ways into the Risinghurst estate – in May 2012 over safety fears.

Oxford Mail:

Now Oxfordshire county councillor Glynis Phillips, who represents Risinghurst, is calling for the road to open up to traffic again following the start of a three week closure of Green Road which will allow Thames Water engineers to work on a collapsed pipe, which is five metres deep.

During this work, access to the Eastern Bypass from Green Road has been closed, but there is a diversion route in place via the A40.

Oxford Mail:

She said: “The diversion that is in place is via Wheatley, it’s unnecessary.

“The road really needs to be reopened this week.”

She added: “It’s to do with the fact that there’s two ways in and out of Risinghurst, there’s no scope for one way traffic.

“Using that junction people can turn right in and out of Risinghurst.”

In the five years leading up to the closure there were eight crashes, five serious, involving vehicles turning right from the A40 into Collinwood Road.

The Risinghurst councillor added that lights could prevent these accidents: “The road had to be closed for safety, there were 16 accidents, but we’re now calling for the road to be reopened with temporary traffic lights, that would prevent these accidents.

“The accidents happened when people are turning right, but the lights will stop people cutting across moving traffic and a bus lane.”

In November 2013 highway bosses were deciding whether to reverse the controversial decision to shut off the access point to Risinghurst.

However it has remained closed since.

Alongside the reopening of the A40 pass, Councillor Phillips is also joining the widely-publicised campaign to call for pedestrian lights to be put in place.

She said:“The residents do have a reason to cross the dual carriageway.

People cross because Barton has a school, a leisure centre, a spa and a shop, and Risinghurst has a post office, a church and a hairdresser.”

“We need to get a crossing.”