Blog

Durham City – we're open as usual!

As major roadworks move into the second phase at Gilesgate and Leazes Bowl roundabouts, we wanted to take this opportunity to remind you that Durham City is still very much open for businesses as usual.

As part of Durham County Council's plans (DCC) to install a £2.5million SCOOT traffic system, it was only natural people travelling to and from the City would experience some disruption to their journey.  However, the majority of the required road closures have taken place overnight, meaning that delays to travel time have been mainly during the traditional rush hour periods.  Consequently, we'd urge you to not let these roadworks deter you from coming to visit the City – Durham businesses are still here and ready to welcome you as usual.

From our own experience of commuting into work every day and through chatting with other BID businesses, it seems the majority of hold-ups happen around the normal rush hour times (as in any other major city across the UK!).  However, this is only during a small portion of the day – after rush hour, we're seeing traffic levels return to normal and so coming into the City during these times shouldn't pose too much of a problem for people.

Of course, if you don't fancy the rush hour traffic while roadworks are ongoing, we're really very lucky that there are alternative ways of accessing the City, with Durham enjoying excellent public transport services and links, such as the Park and Ride system.

The new SCOOT system, which stands for Split Cycle Offset Optimisation Technique, will see traffic lights placed on the Gilesgate and Leazes Bowl roundabouts. Improvements to both pedestrian and cycling facilities are also being carried out on both roundabouts, with the system managing and controlling traffic signals automatically, to help cope with fluctuations in traffic flow through the use of on-street detectors embedded in the road. When complete, the SCOOT system promises to improve people’s journey times through the city.

When the new SCOOT system is complete, it will help facilitate access to Durham City while improving traffic flow, so that more people can enjoy the fantastic offer we have here in Durham.  From big chain brands through to independent retailers, the City certainly has something for everyone living locally and those visiting from further afield; improved road access can only mean an increased footfall to Durham.  Until then, the message is very much we're here, we're open, and we'd love to see you in Durham soon.

You can keep up-to-date with the progress of the roadworks and alternative ways of reaching Durham City by following #LeazesBowl and  #Gilesgate hashtags on social media.  Make sure you've liked us on Twitter and Facebook too – we often share updates on the roadworks to keep you in the loop too!

More blog posts