North East Lincolnshire Council will seek to remove a bus lane from a busy Grimsby road in a bid to improve traffic in peak morning hours.
Councillor Ian Lindley put forward a motion during a meeting on Thursday calling for action to be taken on the Scartho Road lane “at the earliest opportunity”.
He said drivers regularly “flout the law” during the two hours the lane is active every morning with no enforcement action having taken place.
“It serves little purpose apart from causing heavy congestions and frustrating motorists,” he added.
Council leader David Watson disagreed however, warning that removing the lane would worsen the bus services which used it, leading to longer journeys and higher fares.
He said the lanes created more consistent and faster journeys and praised the social benefits of public transport.
“Once passengers are lost their loyalty cannot be brought back,” he said.
Councillors in support of the motion also noted the potential increase in traffic in the near future as hundreds of houses were developed, along with roadworks such as the Tollbar Roundabout changes creating diversions.
Opposition councillors raised concerns over the future safety of cyclists using the road, including young pupils going to school or college.
Other councillors were concerned about backlash from the bus companies.
Councillor Peter Wheatley said more should be done to enforce the lanes, potentially creating an income for the council – councillor David Bolton, portfolio holder for “safer and stronger communities” promised more would be done.
An amended motion from Councillor Mathew Patrick, calling for a review to take place before a decision was made, was voted down. However, Councillor Patrick then took the opportunity to remind members motions were “not binding” and said if the original vote passed, he would still “put this under consideration and ask officers to do a thorough review.”
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