Bus stop move was last straw’

PUBLISHED: 11:10 14 January 2010 | UPDATED: 17:30 25 August 2010

A GROUP blasted a £2 million congestion-easing scheme, accusing project leaders of turning their back on public transport users.

A GROUP blasted a £2 million congestion-easing scheme, accusing project leaders of turning their back on public transport users.

Sidcup Community Group (SCG) secretary Paul Laundy criticised Bexley council's scheme, saying it penalises people who take the bus.

The group's major gripe centres on bus stops currently outside Tesco Metro in Station Road that will be moved further up the street to make way for car parking spaces.

They say the change will force bus users to trudge further up the road and cross a busy junction.

The Tesco bus stop is already some 400m away from the next 286 bus stop in Halfway Street.

Sidcup's three-year congestion plan has already seen major re-surfacing works in Station Road, the introduction of traffic lights in Elm Road, with a series of other measures in the pipeline to boost vehicle flow through the town.

Mr Laundy said: "The poorly publicised public consultation on traffic modifications in Station Road has been completed.

"Despite representations from the public, commuters young, old and infirm will have an uphill walk to relocated bus stops outside the solicitors at Alma Road junction so that car drivers can access Tesco.

"So much for discouraging shopping motorists."

He referred to a £3.4 million grant to Bexley council from Transport for London (TfL).

TfL commissioner Peter Hendy said: "Bexley has identified a range of small and large-scale projects which will... improve the environment and promote greener forms of travel."

Mr Laundy added: "Can someone from Bexley council please explain this contradiction?"

Peter Craske, the council's cabinet member for transport said: "The SCG has opposed all improvements to Sidcup: the traffic lights; the resurfacing; the changes to improve traffic flow.

"All the investment has been overwhelmingly supported by residents and if we listened to the SCG there would be no investment in Sidcup at all.

"We have gone to great lengths to consult residents and incorporate their feedback in these plans.

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