The cost of puffin crossings

SIR – Anyone using Parkway in WGC recently will have seen the extensive work being undertaken where there were Pelican traffic lights at the Church Road junction. Why?, a number of people have asked me. The pelican is being changed to a puffin – a

SIR - Anyone using Parkway in WGC recently will have seen the extensive work being undertaken where there were Pelican traffic lights at the Church Road junction. Why?, a number of people have asked me.

The pelican is being changed to a puffin - a different bird, with a different set of lights. They will be like the ones near Waitrose, which I know are unpopular with many people.

What of the cost? Around �20,000 per set. Across Hertfordshire that is around �8 million to change them all, I am told.

I am yet to be convinced the new system is any better. They are supposed to detect whether people are actually waiting to cross, have already gone, or are still crossing, and adjust signals to drivers accordingly. That's the theory, but I have seen many 'errors' by the system.


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So why is Herts Highways still carrying out this expensive work whose benefits are at best marginal? Well, surprise, surprise, it has been told to by the Government. So, on the one hand the Government sets targets for councils to save money, on the other it instructs them to spend. I can think of many ways of spending �8m more usefully than this and so, I expect, can readers.

Malcolm Cowan,

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Lib Dem county councillor.

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