South Yorkshire transport chiefs have welcomed a raft of measures being introduced to combat problem parkers who are causing disruption to bus routes serving thousands of passengers.
Earlier this month transport chiefs, bus drivers and disgruntled passengers joined forces to urge dodgy drivers to park properly after a number of services had to be diverted because of vehicles blocking access down certain routes.
Councillors have now launched the North Sheffield Better Buses project in a bid to tackle the problem in a part of the city beset by congestion problems. The scheme is designed to speed up bus travel and reduce traffic along Barnsley Road between Ecclesfield and the city centre.
This is part of a wider £18m Better Bus Area programme designed to improve bus journeys across the whole city by introducing smarter signal controls, new bus lanes, junction upgrades, road widening and more cameras to better monitor the flow of traffic.
Ben Gilligan, director of public transport at South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive, said: "Since 2012, South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive, Sheffield Council and Sheffield’s bus operators have together delivered a package of improvements as part of the £18m Better Bus Area programme.
"The schemes we have funded will improve infrastructure along key bus corridors across South Yorkshire and encourage greater public transport use.
"The work on Barnsley Road being delivered on our behalf by Sheffield City Council is the final scheme along the north Sheffield corridor, taking the total investment along this route to £2.4m.
"Once work is complete in summer 2018, standing traffic generally will be reduced, leading to faster journey times for bus passengers."
The plan of action will be focused on alleviating traffic along Barnsley Road, close to the Northern General Hospital, which often sees build-ups on approach to Lane Top.
The measures include:-
*Widening Barnsley Road on the downhill side to ensure parking can be retained
*Better co-ordination between pedestrian crossings and the traffic lights to reduce delays
*New right turn lanes installed at the junction of Barnsley Road and Hatfield House Lane
*Double yellow lines installed between the existing bus stop clearway and the parking lay-by, but parking bays will be installed in a new lay-by to provide two lanes of traffic
*An extra uphill (southbound) lane will be installed to allow buses and other vehicles turning left to avoid the queues
*Parking will not be allowed on the street at the top of Barnsley Road, but instead verges will be hardened to allow for parking. In addition, some grassed verges will be retained and new trees planted.