Councillor Rob Humby, Deputy Leader of Hampshire County Council and Executive Member for Economy, Transport and Environment, said: “We’ve seen a dramatic drop in traffic as our lifestyles and work patterns have changed during the Coronavirus outbreak with many people walking and cycling more and I think it will be important to hold onto the benefits of more active travel as we come out of lockdown.
“Hampshire County Council has been working collaboratively with New Forest District Council and Ringwood Town Council to develop a programme of small-scale measures that support the Ringwood Town Access Plan. These measures will help improve pedestrian and cycle safety, while ensuring good access to the town remains after the closure of West Street.”
Following public consultation in 2017, Highways England is taking forward a scheme to increase capacity on the A31, decrease congestion and improve safety in the area by widening of the westbound carriageway of the A31 and the closing the West Street access onto the A31.
As a consequence of these Highway England works, Hampshire County Council is investing £229,000 to implement improvements including:
• Resurfacing and widening Strides Lane footpath and installing new dropped kerbs;
• Installations of traffic calming measures to create a gateway at the Market Place end of West Street;
• Construction of an improved pedestrian crossing between the Furlong Shopping Centre and Ringwood Gateway/the town centre car parks;
• Improvements to the pedestrian crossing adjacent to the Ringwood Meeting House;
Hampshire County Council has contracted ROCON Construction Ltd to carry out the works. All work will be carried out in line with the Construction Leadership Council’s Site Operation Procedures based on Public Health England guidance. ROCON Construction Ltd will be following national guidelines on social distancing and there is no reason to anticipate contact with members of the public.
Works to enable the closure of the West Street access to the A31 will be carried out later in the year or early in 2021, followed by reversal of the one-way traffic flow in Meeting House Lane.
Work on the Highways England A31 widening scheme is due to commence in Spring 2021.
For more information about the County Council’s Ringwood Town Centre improvement project, visit the scheme web pages: https://www.hants.gov.uk/transport/transportschemes/ringwoodtownimprovements
For more information on Highways England’s A31 road widening scheme visit their web pages: https://highwaysengland.co.uk/projects/a31-ringwood-road-widening/