A proposal to reduce the number of low traffic neighbourhoods (LTNs) in east Oxford was intensely debated before councillors ran out of time to vote on the motion.

Labour county councillor Michael O'Connor, of the University Parks division, put forward a motion to open up the LTNs during a full county council meeting on Tuesday.

He also called for an investigation into installing traffic lights on the notoriously dangerous Plain roundabout in Oxford.

There was no time to vote on the motion in the near-five-hour meeting at County Hall.

But this did not stop some of those in attendance from slamming the motion as a "cynical piece of political theatre", "performative" and "lacking in evidence".

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Oxford restaurateur Clinton Pugh was among those speaking out during the meeting.

He called for bigger proposals but acknowledged it was "good to see motions are being brought forward".

"The biggest problem on the roundabout is that people cannot turn left when they come down the Cowley Road," Mr Pugh said.

He added: "You’ve got to think bigger. You’ve got to think outside the box."

The motion "urgently requests cabinet to investigate opening a direct route for motor traffic between Iffley Road, Cowley Road and St. Clement's, such as Rectory Road and Marston Street, to facilitate traffic dispersion".

It adds that cabinet should "investigate installing traffic lights on the Plain to improve traffic flow".

Oxford Mail: Labour councillor Michael O'ConnorLabour councillor Michael O'Connor (Image: Oxfordshire County Council.)

Proposals also include calls to open the Littlemore Road filter to motor traffic outside school travel hours as well as investigating measures "to reduce private school traffic on the Plain, such as a school street on Cowley Place".

A member of the newly formed Independent Oxford Alliance Party, who lives on Marston Street and is planning to stand as a candidate in the St Mary's ward at the next city council elections, John Skinner, spoke out against the idea.

"This won't work," he said.

"A key measure to reducing traffic at the Plain is to open side-streets.

"Labour still support the lunatic bus lanes and there are constant jams on the ring road and chaos arising from Cowley LTNs."

Mr Skinner added: "This motion is a cynical piece of political theatre designed to produce quotes for red rose election leaflets and implying opposition to LTNs."

Speaker Zuhara Plummer, said: "This motion is not about having traffic lights at the Plain.

Oxford Mail: The new Independent Oxford Alliance Party launched recently.The new Independent Oxford Alliance Party launched recently. (Image: IOA)

"It's about people having a sense of where we're going, why we're going there and how we're going to get there together."

Mr O'Connor said: "Although they haven’t increased congestion in many parts of the city, LTNs have increased congestion in very specific ways, such as by funnelling traffic down Iffley, Cowley and St Clement’s, making buses slower.

"Some places around the ring road have felt disconnected from the city.

"We think better buses and bike infrastructure can help, but we’re not there at the minute."

Speaking after the meeting, the county council's Highways chief, Andrew Gant, said: "Labour have turned their backs on residents and on their former principles.

Oxford Mail: Councillor Andrew Gant.Councillor Andrew Gant.

"They failed to engage with key stakeholders.

"Their proposals won’t work.

"They have created confusion and anxiety."