A NUMBER of bus lanes in Coventry are set to be scrapped for use by motorists.
The council is first considering introducing a six-month trial by suspending the bus lanes affected.
It follows a pledge by Coventry City Council leader George Duggins earlier this year.
Now the ruling Labour cabinet will discuss the measure at its meeting next Tuesday (November 29). The trial will begin in January next year.
Coventry has seen a 20 rise in traffic in 15 years, according to a report by the Department for Transport.
The same report also suggests Coventry has the fastest rising levels of congestion due to population and economic growth, with associated air quality issues, a council statement states.
Coun Duggins said: “I’m delighted that we are getting this trial underway and that we have been able to agree it with bus operators.
“As a bus user I know how important public transport is. But I also know how frustrating it can be to be stuck in a queue with an empty lane next to you.
“We want to keep traffic moving around the city for everyone. So, we’re going to suspend buses and monitor whether traffic flow improves.
“We’ll also be checking bus times to see whether the changes have an impact on journey times.
“The changes will mean that we can work with bus operators to develop and implement more effective means of improving bus journey time reliability and hopefully encourage more people to use buses to ease congestion.”
Coventry has 22 bus lanes totalling 8km in length. There are also bus priority measures at nine signalised junctions. All bus lanes in Coventry operate 24 hours a day.
Councillor Jayne Innes, cabinet member for city services, said: “We’ve got lots of very good data for car and bus journey times so this trial will be really interesting.
“And it’s good to know that our roads are busy because we are a growing and successful city. What we need to do, is ensure we balance the needs of all road users and that’s what this trial is all about.”
Peter Coates, managing director of National Express West Midlands, said: “We will be participating in Coventry’s six-month bus lane review. We will share our data with the city council to fully evaluate the impact on our customers and the city as a whole.”
The bus lanes that will be suspended are:
Ansty Road outbound at Clifford Bridge Road
Ansty Rd inbound at Burns Rd
Foleshill Road/Old Church Road (inbound 95m and outbound 125m)
Holbrook Lane outbound
London Road outbound St James Lane
Tile Hill Gyratory