Bassett Avenue and The Avenue
Temporary lane closures were implemented in response to Covid-19 to provide cyclists with their own on-road cycle lanes and support social distancing.
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The Avenue has undergone further improvements to enhance walking and cycling provision and support safer, more sustainable journeys in the local area. Works have included making the temporary cycle lanes permanent between Winn Road and the subway underpass on The Common. The scheme joins other successful trials on Dale Road, Portswood Road and the southern section of Hill Lane, where existing pop-up cycle lanes are also set to be made permanent.
The council is now working with communities in the east and west of Bassett Avenue to support safer, more sustainable journeys in residential areas. This includes exploring opportunities to make the existing cycle lanes on Winchester Road safer. To find out more about this, click here.
New ‘quietway’ routes are also being considered to the north of the subway on the Common along the side roads to the east and west of The Avenue. These would replace the temporary cycle lanes between the subway and Winchester Road roundabout, which have now been removed both northbound and southbound. The right turn at Burgess Road has also been reinstated as part of these changes. The existing shared use facility along Bassett Avenue has been retained. More information about the removal of the cycle lanes in this section is available here.
The trial cycle lanes were installed last year during much lower traffic levels as a result of the national Covid-19 lockdowns. With traffic levels 67% higher in August 2021 than in April 2020 during the first lockdown, and the potential for traffic to increase following the final easing of national restrictions, the council took the decision withdraw part of the scheme while continuing to invest in wider cycling facilities on and around the route.
Other plans for the area also include road safety improvements for the Flowers Estate and completing a planning application to widen Lovers Walk. If this planning application is approved, the council would then need to apply for Section 38 consent to work on Common land. This work would include widening and improving the surface of existing paths that suffer from erosion to ensure they are suitable for people walking and cycling.
This would further support plans for the quietway being explored for the eastern side of The Avenue, while funding biodiversity improvements elsewhere locally to Southampton Common. Together with a new ‘Code of Conduct’ being developed by the council to encourage people to ‘share with care’ in shared spaces, the changes would also improve access and safety for people walking and cycling along this popular shared route. The plans follow an extensive consultation about the proposals for Lovers Walk in early 2020.
21 June 2021
Works started on improvements for pedestrian access along The Avenue north from Northlands Road up to Highfield Road. Details can be found here.
9 September 2020
We installed wands between Winn Road and Winchester Road roundabout to help highlight the new pop-up cycle lanes and to assess the impact of additional segregation along this section. This trial gave us valuable insight into the spacing and type of wands that should be used, the impact on street cleansing and the effectiveness of the measures in improving awareness of the cycle lanes and preventing parking and cars being in the lanes. Following this trial, we took the decision to remove the wands and will apply our findings from the trial to explore other suitable options for cycle lanes going forward.
28 August 2020
In line with our assurances to local residents, we closely monitored the scheme and the feedback received. As our city got moving again, we saw a steady increase in traffic levels and journey times on Bassett Avenue and therefore took the decision to remove the temporary cycle lanes between Winchester Road Roundabout and Chilworth Roundabout.
Between these points, Bassett Avenue reverted back to two lanes of traffic in each direction. Cyclists are able to use the existing shared use paths on both sides of Bassett Avenue as an alternative to the road.
We carried out work to remove the lining on Bassett Avenue overnight on Wednesday 2 and Thursday 3 September.
As part of the adjustments made under this scheme, we introduced additional segregation between Winn Road and Winchester Road to help people cycling feel safe alongside passing traffic. The temporary cycle lanes in this section will remain, along with the new 30mph speed limit along the whole length. We made further changes allowing buses to turn right into Burgess Road from The Avenue.
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The dual carriageway was reduced to a single lane in both directions while major events, hospitality and high street shops were locked down. (See Map) Bassett Avenue has now reverted back to two lanes of traffic in each direction between Winchester Road Roundabout and Burgess Road.
Sections of The Avenue where it is dual carriageway were reduced to one lane but for the majority of The Avenue width restrictions were in place to allow for on-road cycle lanes, while maintaining one lane in and outbound for vehicles. (See Map)