Less Disruption Promised For Local Roads

But announcement is little comfort to traders and residents of Devonshire Road

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Local roads are set to experience less unnecessary congestion caused by road works thanks to deal stuck between Thames Water and Mayor of London Boris Johnson.

Leader of Hounslow Council, Cllr Peter Thompson, welcomed the news saying, “This is good news for local people and local road users. No-one likes being stuck in traffic and it is particularly irritating when it can be avoided.

“This deal will help us in our commitment to make our streets greener and safer. One of the ways we can this is to improve the way that the borough’s roads work by reducing congestion, promoting greener transport and tackling road repairs.”

However, the news will come as little comfort to the traders and residents of Devonshire Road who have endured two months of road works which, although scheduled to end on 12th April, remain unfinished.

The works, which began earlier than scheduled after the discovery of a gas leak on March 17th, were to replace a section of worn out cast iron gas main with new, long lasting, plastic pipe. Contractors carrying out the work on behalf of National Grid Gas dug a metre deep trench that ran the length of eleven shops and then did little else for some weeks. They are currently working at the junction of Devonshire Road and Glebe Street meaning that Annadale Road and other roads running off Devonshire Road are currently only accessible using a lengthy diversion through the residential roads of the Glebe Estate.

Following the announcement of the Mayor’s deal, Boris Johnson said, “Roads must not be cordoned off when no one is working there, so Londoners will welcome Thames Water's commitment to help get cars moving again. This will help to reduce congestion and drivers' frustrations throughout London.”

Whilst they have adopted a gallant ‘business as usual’ attitude, Devonshire Road’s traders are calling on the council to strike the deal with all public utility companies, including National Grid Gas, so that all businesses, residents and motorists are spared unnecessary congestion, avoidable diversions and dangerous trenches on Chiswick’s roads.

A spokesperson for Hounslow Council said, "We have asked those responsible for an explanation of why the work is taking so long and have strongly urged them to let residents and local businesses know when the work can be expected to be completed."

May 23, 2008