Harrogate/Knaresborough Solutions

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Roavin
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Harrogate/Knaresborough Solutions

Post by Roavin » Sun Aug 30, 2020 19:29

Harrogate and Knaresborough is an urban area consisting of two towns situated to the north of the Leeds/Bradford urban area and to the south of the city of Ripon with a populatioh of 76,777. However, despite its population, the area's road service is suprisingly poor, with it being served almost entirely by S2s and S2+1s and with no proper bypass or ring road barring the S2 A658 partial bypass, causing horrendous congestion in both towns, particularly on major routes such as the A61 in southern Harrogate and increasing journey times.

What road improvements would you carry out to fix this?

Personally, I would firstly upgrade the A658 to D2 between the existing A61 and A59 and GSJ the roundabouts with the existing A661 and the B6164, creating an expressway of sorts. This would ensure that traffic heading south that wishes to avoid Harrogate and Knaresborough flows smoothly and quickly, and create a high-quality bypass for the towns.

Secondly, in order to prevent traffic heading north or west from having to drive through the centres of the towns, I would construct a northwestern bypass starting at a new roundabout with the A658 near Huby, connecting with the B6162, existing A59 and A61 with roundabouts on the western side, and with the B6165 and A6055 (with roundabouts) on the northern side, before reconnecting with the A59 and A658 at the Goldsborough Caravan Site Roundabout. This bypass would be mostly S2 but would also have sections of S2+1.

I would number the western side of the bypass as the A61 and the northern side as the A59 (declassifying the sections of both roads bypassed by the bypass) and declassify the A661 after it meets the A658 to discourage traffic from passing through the centres of the towns.
I am obsessed with the A1237 and A1079.

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Re: Harrogate/Knaresborough Solutions

Post by Glenn A » Sun Aug 30, 2020 19:33

I was at the Great Yorkshire Show a few years ago and even though you can avoid the town centre of Harrogate, the drive west from the showground was terrible and there needs to be some kind of relief road around Harrogate.

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Re: Harrogate/Knaresborough Solutions

Post by Roavin » Sun Aug 30, 2020 19:37

Glenn A wrote:
Sun Aug 30, 2020 19:33
I was at the Great Yorkshire Show a few years ago and even though you can avoid the town centre of Harrogate, the drive west from the showground was terrible and there needs to be some kind of relief road around Harrogate.
Indeed
I am obsessed with the A1237 and A1079.

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Bryn666
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Re: Harrogate/Knaresborough Solutions

Post by Bryn666 » Sun Aug 30, 2020 22:52

Too bad it's an area very opposed to a huge bypass.

The A658 to the SE was controversial enough. Getting it to swing back to the A59 will never happen.
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stu531
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Re: Harrogate/Knaresborough Solutions

Post by stu531 » Sun Aug 30, 2020 23:03

My home ground.

As Bryn has implied, it's an area which is flooded with NIMBYs, and it takes an age to get anything done. There's a lot of building work going on, on the west side of town, but with very little in the way of infrastructure improvements - so it's going to get worse.

There was talk (and studies done) on an E-W bypass (the 'northern bypass'), from the A59/B6161 roundabout in the west to somewhere joining the A658 in the east. None of the routes got approved, and a whole host of local groups got involved against them. To be fair, the demolition of the Nidd Gorge would've been bad.

There have been some rumblings about a western bypass, from the A61/A658 junction to Killinghall, which would provide some relief for villages to the west. Again, nothing has come of that.

A route could be built from the A661/A658 (Kestrel) roundabout to J46 of the A1(M); any town Harrogate sized would ordinarily have a much better route to it.

It comes down to the fact that locals refer to Harrogate as having 'old money'. No new investment needed, so nothing changes around here!

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Re: Harrogate/Knaresborough Solutions

Post by Roavin » Sun Aug 30, 2020 23:14

stu531 wrote:
Sun Aug 30, 2020 23:03
My home ground.

As Bryn has implied, it's an area which is flooded with NIMBYs, and it takes an age to get anything done. There's a lot of building work going on, on the west side of town, but with very little in the way of infrastructure improvements - so it's going to get worse.

There was talk (and studies done) on an E-W bypass (the 'northern bypass'), from the A59/B6161 roundabout in the west to somewhere joining the A658 in the east. None of the routes got approved, and a whole host of local groups got involved against them. To be fair, the demolition of the Nidd Gorge would've been bad.

There have been some rumblings about a western bypass, from the A61/A658 junction to Killinghall, which would provide some relief for villages to the west. Again, nothing has come of that.

A route could be built from the A661/A658 (Kestrel) roundabout to J46 of the A1(M); any town Harrogate sized would ordinarily have a much better route to it.

It comes down to the fact that locals refer to Harrogate as having 'old money'. No new investment needed, so nothing changes around here!
Oh yes, I forgot you were basically - if I dare say so - the Karen capital of Yorkshire.
I am obsessed with the A1237 and A1079.

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stu531
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Re: Harrogate/Knaresborough Solutions

Post by stu531 » Mon Aug 31, 2020 07:30

I had to look up that cultural reference!

I don't think it's quite that bad, but there certainly are folk that are entitled beyond reason. The Stray Defence Association, as an example, takes it upon itself to prevent a lot of activity going on to the Stray (200 acres of grass that surround Harrogate), some of which would be generally beneficial to the town. So rather than the town (as a whole) behaving at the expense of others, it's pretty much self-defeating.

But you're right that something needs to be done. As more houses are built to the west, the rat-runs will become saturated with traffic, and people in those villages will start to complain. If 'Access Only' signs go up (and that might happen) then the existing more significant routes such as the B6162 will choke, causing more problems.

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Re: Harrogate/Knaresborough Solutions

Post by Alderpoint » Tue Sep 01, 2020 09:22

I lived in the area 40 years ago and it was pretty bad then! There was discussion even then of various bypass routes but the only one that happened is the southern A658 "bypass" from Goldsborough to Pannal.
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Re: Harrogate/Knaresborough Solutions

Post by KeithW » Tue Sep 01, 2020 10:05

stu531 wrote:
Mon Aug 31, 2020 07:30
I had to look up that cultural reference!

I don't think it's quite that bad, but there certainly are folk that are entitled beyond reason. The Stray Defence Association, as an example, takes it upon itself to prevent a lot of activity going on to the Stray (200 acres of grass that surround Harrogate), some of which would be generally beneficial to the town. So rather than the town (as a whole) behaving at the expense of others, it's pretty much self-defeating.

But you're right that something needs to be done. As more houses are built to the west, the rat-runs will become saturated with traffic, and people in those villages will start to complain. If 'Access Only' signs go up (and that might happen) then the existing more significant routes such as the B6162 will choke, causing more problems.

That is the dichotomy that Harrogate is in, you either block new housing development or build housing and whinge about the congested roads, that has been the historical problem on Teesside although in that case it was less Nimbyism than the inability of local councils to cooperate. Since the 1930's It has been and still is the situation that anything regardStockton and Middlesbrough councils want to do is opposed by Redcar and Cleveland. They sabotaged the planned eastern bypass by allowing houses to be built on the route. The latest is a new Tees crossing planned by the Tees Valley Combined Authority. Redcar and Cleveland council want a crossing between Seaton Carew and Redcar near the mouth of the River.

That said a new traffic tunnel near the Transporter Bridge would make a lot of sense and allow the regeneration of Port Clarence. The distance from Middlesbrough to Port Clarence is less than 300 metres but the journey by road is 6 miles along a very congested route that takes at least 30 minutes by bus. When the Transporter was in its prime there was a service every few minutes but today its more of a tourist attraction than everyday transport.

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Re: Harrogate/Knaresborough Solutions

Post by Road2Nowhere » Tue Sep 01, 2020 10:40

I'm not local to say the least, but nonetheless knew enough to avoid the main roads into Harrogate for my trip in May 2019. So rat running for me also.

Went this way. Also parked near where indicated, as it's unrestricted and a short walk into town from there. So also probably annoyed somebody local by parking in front of their house.

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Re: Harrogate/Knaresborough Solutions

Post by Stevie D » Tue Sep 01, 2020 11:13

I posted my suggestion for a northern by pass on here some years ago: viewtopic.php?t=31701. The map in the post has been lost but it is at http://getdown.org.uk/sabre/harrogate.png

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Re: Harrogate/Knaresborough Solutions

Post by Roavin » Tue Sep 01, 2020 12:19

Stevie D wrote:
Tue Sep 01, 2020 11:13
I posted my suggestion for a northern by pass on here some years ago: viewtopic.php?t=31701. The map in the post has been lost but it is at http://getdown.org.uk/sabre/harrogate.png
That looks good
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Re: Harrogate/Knaresborough Solutions

Post by stu531 » Thu Sep 03, 2020 14:21

Good map Stevie, but your proposed route is spectacularly similar to the Northern Relief Route as proposed by NYCC a couple of years ago. The place went mad because of the damage that would've been done to the Nidd Gorge. The bit at the top of your diagram, near where it says 'Nidd Viaduct' is a couple of hundred metres from the river - close enough for people to complain most vociferously!

Have a look at this article.

It won't happen - not on that alignment. It *could* happen on an alignment to the north of Harrogate & Knaresborough, but only in a few years once the current furore has died down.

There have been more mutterings of late about a Western Bypass, from the Old Spring Well (B6161-A59 junction) to Buttersyke Bar (A658/A61) but again this is right through some pretty nice countryside (the higher Crimple valley) and there are some very rich folk down there!
Road2Nowhere wrote:
Tue Sep 01, 2020 10:40
I'm not local to say the least, but nonetheless knew enough to avoid the main roads into Harrogate for my trip in May 2019. So rat running for me also.

Went this way. Also parked near where indicated, as it's unrestricted and a short walk into town from there. So also probably annoyed somebody local by parking in front of their house.
Yep, that's the best route into town from Wetherby and pretty much the route I use to go from where I live to the A1 southbound.

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Re: Harrogate/Knaresborough Solutions

Post by Bryn666 » Thu Sep 03, 2020 17:17

Surprised that a gap between the town and river that contains a sewage works could be so vital to protect from a road but then people are a strange bunch.
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stu531
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Re: Harrogate/Knaresborough Solutions

Post by stu531 » Thu Sep 03, 2020 18:22

Bryn666 wrote:
Thu Sep 03, 2020 17:17
Surprised that a gap between the town and river that contains a sewage works could be so vital to protect from a road but then people are a strange bunch.
They are indeed. There's actually a fair bit more to it than that, in fairness; there's a pedestrian/cycle track called Nidderdale Greenway that such a route would slice through. Looks like this.

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Re: Harrogate/Knaresborough Solutions

Post by JLRacerZz » Fri Sep 04, 2020 08:13

yeah this is the problem in this area. They keep building new houses but we dont have any infrastructure to support it and dont get me wrong i really like walking down nidd gorge but something needs to be done in the near future because the congestion is so bad already for example where i live i am next to the A1(m) i can be in leeds or york the same time it takes me to get into harrogate sometimes so i barley go into harrogate anymore at all the only time i go in now is to see my other half and she lives down claro road which is a right pain to get to at certain times.

Oh i dont know if i has been mentioned on here but the junction 47 A1(M) improvement scheme has just started works

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Re: Harrogate/Knaresborough Solutions

Post by Alderpoint » Fri Sep 04, 2020 08:29

stu531 wrote:
Thu Sep 03, 2020 18:22
There's actually a fair bit more to it than that, in fairness; there's a pedestrian/cycle track called Nidderdale Greenway that such a route would slice through. Looks like this.
Disused railway line.
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stu531
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Re: Harrogate/Knaresborough Solutions

Post by stu531 » Fri Sep 04, 2020 11:16

Alderpoint wrote:
Fri Sep 04, 2020 08:29
Disused railway line.
Yep, it's part of the old Harrogate-Ripon line, and the fork off towards Pateley Bridge. There are plans to take it all the way along the Nidd and up to Pateley if possible. It's actually a decent run out on bike.
JLRacerZz wrote:
Fri Sep 04, 2020 08:13
yeah this is the problem in this area. They keep building new houses but we dont have any infrastructure to support it and dont get me wrong i really like walking down nidd gorge but something needs to be done in the near future because the congestion is so bad already for example where i live i am next to the A1(m) i can be in leeds or york the same time it takes me to get into harrogate sometimes so i barley go into harrogate anymore at all the only time i go in now is to see my other half and she lives down claro road which is a right pain to get to at certain times.
Yep - as mentioned above, there is a plethora of new houses being built across the two towns. The A59 to the west of Knaresborough now has two new roundabouts to allow access to new estates that are going up. That's not too bad, because it's close enough to J47 - but ideally this stretch would be dual, as it's getting a lot busier now.

Claro Road is indeed a special pain! Skipton Road - argh - and Wetherby Road into town from the Kestrel can be a nightmare.
JLRacerZz wrote:
Fri Sep 04, 2020 08:13
Oh i dont know if i has been mentioned on here but the junction 47 A1(M) improvement scheme has just started works
I saw a picture of Cllr Mackenzie doing his bit here - for the cameras. Widening of the slip roads on the J47 roundabout - which was under-engineered in the first place!

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Re: Harrogate/Knaresborough Solutions

Post by KeithW » Fri Sep 04, 2020 12:45

Alderpoint wrote:
Fri Sep 04, 2020 08:29
stu531 wrote:
Thu Sep 03, 2020 18:22
There's actually a fair bit more to it than that, in fairness; there's a pedestrian/cycle track called Nidderdale Greenway that such a route would slice through. Looks like this.
Disused railway line.
The old Leeds Northallerton railway presumably , apart from the fact that bits have been built over its a tad narrow for bypass not to mention being in the wrong place. What is needed as far as I can see is a Western Bypass that would then head NE towards the A1(M) at Boroughbridge or Dishforth but the Nimby's say no at the same time as whinging about congestion.

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Re: Harrogate/Knaresborough Solutions

Post by hat » Sun Sep 06, 2020 09:15

Further along the A59 there’s still no sign of work starting on the Kex Gill realignment as we head into another winter

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