‘Rat run’ closes for 18 months

Loch Road
Loch Road

A residential road will be closed for 18 months in a move to stop it being used as a ‘rat run’ by motorists.

Residents living in Loch Road, Kirkintilloch, have complained for years about drivers using their street as a short cut and the speed of vehicles.

The road will close on Monday between Bothlyn Avenue and Woodilee Road as part of an ‘experiment’ that aims to address householders’ traffic concerns.

However, followers on the Herald’s Facebook page have made their views known about the closure, with many against it.

David Hope said: “What’s the point in having a road there if you don’t want it to be used? If there are lorries going along it to get access to the industrial estate, it’s not designed for that. Other than that it’s a public road, we pay road tax and are entitled to use it.”

Wendy McColl said: “As a resident in this area for 16 years, we where told the new bypass would stop drivers using the road as a shortcut. Two surveys done over the last year have shown that the number of cars using the road had come down, so why have the council gone ahead with this decision?”

Concern has also been raised about the impact the closure will have on traffic on other parts of the town.

Simon McIlvenna said: “All that will happen is traffic will back up at New Lairdsland Road and back up to Whitegates again. Surely traffic calming measures should have been implemented before closing the road completely.”

However, some are in favour of the closure.

Douglas Ross said: “Bring it on I say. I have relatives in Loch Road and it will take me approximately two to three minutes more maybe to go along Waterside and turn up hill at petrol station. Get a grip people, it’s a trial to see how it goes.”

Michael Maher said: “I lived in Loch Road for six to seven years and the worsening rumble of HGV lorries was one of the reasons we moved. If I still lived there I would be 100 per cent behind these new measures.”

Grace Irvine, the council’s director of neighbourhood services, said the aim is to “see if the closure could work permanently”.

She added: “It follows extensive consultation with local residents over a number of years who have asked for something to be done to reduce the speed and volume of traffic that could be using Initiative Road instead.

“The emergency services were also consulted and raised no issues.

“If during the experimental closure, we find it is causing significant problems for residents and or road users, we could take the decision to stop the trial early.”