A new bus gate to allow continuous bus travel through the East Anton housing development in Andover will be the first of its kind to be installed in the county, by Hampshire County Council.
At his recent decision day meeting (29 July), Councillor Russell Oppenheimer, Hampshire County Council’s Executive Member for Highway Operations, approved the purchase and installation of equipment, at a cost of £85,000. The technology will be located on the middle section of the central road running through the estate – a section which is currently closed to all traffic.
Cllr Oppenheimer said: “Use of this technology will allow buses and cyclists to access a previously closed road, thereby improving the bus route and making the service more convenient and reliable for passengers. I am proud that this will be a Hampshire first. It will enable better access to local shops and the school by public transport.
“Investment in public transport infrastructure helps to make bus services more attractive as an alternative means of transport to the car. With more passengers, the commercial viability of bus services is strengthened and this will also aid the recovery of local bus services from the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. Furthermore, in helping to reduce carbon emissions in the local area, this bus gate will support the growth of the green economy in Hampshire.”
The bus gate will be clearly signed saying ‘buses and cycles only’ and the use of Automatic Number Plate recognition (ANPR) cameras – which can detect when unauthorised vehicles are using the bus lane – will help enforce the restriction, with penalty charge notices issued to unlawful users. Dates for installing the new bus gate technology are yet to be finalised.
The installation of the bus gate at East Anton will fulfil a condition of planning consent for the East Anton Development.