Metrolink Trafford Park Line – Latest designs

TfGM have recently circulated designs for the Metrolink Trafford Park Line, including details of the changes that’ll affect cycling in the area. We have been told the design is now at an advanced stage, but TfGM are welcoming comments and suggestions for improvement on the details from a user’s perspective. How likely they are to make any significant changes though, I’m not sure.

While these are a big improvement over some of the recent Metrolink development, particularly the Second City Crossing. I think it’s fair to to say there’s still plenty of room for improvement.

It’s particularly disappointing to see existing protected cycleways being removed and replaced with unprotected cycle lanes. Given the parking problems, it’s likely many of these cycle lanes will just become unofficial parking bays, with Trafford Council and Greater Manchester Police washing their hands when it comes to enforcement.

It’s also a shame to see cycleways are not being given priority at side junctions. It’s 2017, we shouldn’t be seeing new cycle facilities going in with give way markings at every side road.

TfGM are obviously aware of how significant Trafford Park, The Trafford Centre and Salford Quays are as a leisure and employment destinations for the whole of Greater Manchester. This is why they’re extending the Metrolink out this way.

Installing high quality, protected cycle infrastructure should be relatively straightforward here compared to say Rusholme. It’s a shame TfGM are cutting corners and not being more ambitious.

I have broken down my comments into some general comments and then specific comments about the individual sections of the route detailed in the designs. The designs are clickable, so you can view them in detail.

General comments

  • I am disappointed to see TfGM have removed protected cycleways and replaced them with cycle lanes in parts of the scheme
  • TfGM need to be aware that cycle routes through Trafford Park are often used for leisure purposes, they should be catering for all ages/abilities 8-80
  • Nothing has been done to address the significant issue of pavement parking, which often leads to footways/cycleways being blocked
  • There doesn’t appear to be much provision for cycle parking along the route
  • A significant issue with the current cycleways through Trafford Park is the lack of priority at side turnings. TfGM should be by default ensuring that pedestrians and cycles have right of way across side turnings with continuous footways/cycleways

MPT3-TP-HDP-610 for CRG_opt-1

  • Why are the current protected cycleways on Sir Alex Ferguson Way being replaced with advisory cycle lanes?
  • I have concerns about the left turn off the eastbound side of Wharfside Way and conflicts with the cycleway, particularly with the angle of the cycleway
  • Why are cycles on the eastbound side of Wharfside Way forced to rejoin the carriageway at the left turn?
  • Pavement parking is a significant issue in this area, what are you doing to address this to ensure footways/cycleways aren’t obstructed?

MPT3-TP-HDP-610 for CRG_opt-2

  • Will there be any improvements to the cycleways on Trafford Wharf Road?
  • On eastbound side of Trafford Wharf Road, you’re forced to leave the protected cycleway and rejoin the carriageway on the corner, a point where there’s likely to be conflict and vehicles using it as an informal drop-off point
  • It’s not clear how cycles will cross the Metrolink tracks to access Trafford Wharf, the only route through looks looks narrow with tight angles, potentially leading to accessibility issues and conflict with pedestrians

MPT3-TP-HDP-610 for CRG_opt-3

  • Access across Metrolink tracks to Trafford Wharf looks tight and will lead to accessibility issues and conflict with pedestrians, are TfGM expecting people on cycles to dismount? People are likely to be using Trafford Wharf for leisure purposes and may be riding non-standard cycles that would struggle with such tight angles

MPT3-TP-HDP-610 for CRG_opt-4

  • Why hasn’t the cycleway on the westbound side of Trafford Wharf Road been maintained as a protected cycleway throughout this section?
  • The westbound approach to the to Quay West entrance looks problematic, particularly in terms of left hooks from vehicles using the car park
  • Will there be toucan crossings across the Quay West entrance junction for cycles travelling westbound?
  • Can we have a dedicated right turn here for cycles, instead of sharing with pedestrians?

MPT3-TP-HDP-610 for CRG_opt-5

  • Why is there a cycle lane and not a protected cycleway on the westbound side of Trafford Wharf Road?
  • On Warren Bruce Road, we’re losing the protected bidirectional cycleway and only getting a cycle lane on southbound side

MPT3-TP-HDP-610 for CRG_opt-6

  • This road is part of the route connecting the quays with the Bridgewater Way, as is used by many people as a leisure route, it should be made safe for ages/abilities 8-80 by including protected cycleways in both directions

MPT3-TP-HDP-610 for CRG_opt-7

  • Will the cycleway through Village Circle be maintained as a bidirectional route?
  • Will there be any improvements to the surfaces, particularly the section across Europa Way?

MPT3-TP-HDP-610 for CRG_opt-8

  • Village Way is a busy dual carriageway with a high proportion of HGVs and fast moving traffic, protected cycleways should be included in both directions

MPT3-TP-HDP-610 for CRG_opt-9

  • Village Way is a busy dual carriageway with a high proportion of HGVs and fast moving traffic, protected cycleways should be included in both directions
  • There’s a risk of left hooks when cycling westbound through this junction
  • Doing a right turn through this junction on the westbound side is very convoluted and will likely be ignored by many
  • More should be done to highlight the presence of the eastbound cycleway through this junction and get vehicles to slow down

MPT3-TP-HDP-610 for CRG_opt-10

  • There’s significant problems across the whole of this junction with the unprotected cycle lanes, left hooks and difficulty making right turns
  • This is a key route through Trafford Park, more should be done to protect cycles

MPT3-TP-HDP-610 for CRG_opt-11

  • Will the existing protected cycleway be maintained through this section?

MPT3-TP-HDP-610 for CRG_opt-12

  • This is a very busy roundabout with motor traffic often going at quite significant speeds, what is being done to slow traffic down?
  • Given the motor traffic speed and volumes, signals should be provided across all arms of the roundabout to enable safe crossing for Pedestrians and cycles
  • Am I correct in thinking the separate footways/cycleways are being turned into shared use paths? If so, why?

MPT3-TP-HDP-610 for CRG_opt-13

  • Will the shared route along the Parkway be improved? It is currently quite narrow, with a poor surface in areas

MPT3-TP-HDP-610 for CRG_opt-14

  • Will the shared route along the Parkway be improved? It is currently quite narrow, with a poor surface in areas

MPT3-TP-HDP-610 for CRG_opt-15

  • There can often be conflict with pedestrians at the crossings, particularly when there’s events on. Can wider crossings or dedicated cycle crossings be provided?
  • Priority should be given to pedestrians and cycles at all side turnings with continuous footways/cycleways, having to give way at each turning is not acceptable in 2017 and TfGM should be aiming for better
  • The cycleway should be maintained through the Mercury Way turning, so that cycles don’t have to mix with pedestrians

MPT3-TP-HDP-610 for CRG_opt-16

  • The cycleways should be maintained through Peel Circle, so that cycles don’t have to mix with pedestrians

MPT3-TP-HDP-610 for CRG_opt-17

MPT3-TP-HDP-610 for CRG_opt-18

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