Letter: Several ideas of how to improve the ASDA roundabout

This reader believes he’s found a number of flaws in the ASDA roundabout and makes suggestions on how it could be improved.

Google Mpas of Asda roundabout

We always welcome a Letter to the Editor to share with our readers – unsurprisingly they don’t always reflect the views of this publication. If you have something you’d like to share, get in touch and of course, your considered comments are welcome below. This from Colin. Ed

I’ve found the missing arrow!

You know, the one heading up the motorway towards St. Mary’s roundabout that would indicate that there is a right turn option at the roundabout. It’s not there, but I’ve found where it is. Read on.

The Isle of Wight Council are pressing ahead with yet another so called “road improvement scheme” in Newport paid for out of central government funding which in reality means all of us through various means of taxation.

Asda roundabout: Version 1
But how did the Council perform on their last scheme, the Asda roundabout? This was paid for by the Council who missed a trick or two with the financing. Many such road access schemes are paid for by the stores that they are servicing; there would have been no need for the roundabout had Asda not built the store there.

It took around six months to complete the road works there which considering the length of road involved, would appear to be rather excessive. Various problems with water and drainage which hadn’t been programmed into the project have been cited.

Asda roundabout: Version 2
As for the road layout and markings, the council is currently on Plan B, the first having been hastily amended following numerous complaints.

The evidence still remains with the ghost arrows and lines. However it is still a fudge.

The roundabout has all exits that are onto single carriageway roads yet still signs traffic to use more than one lane on the roundabout with so called “Zip marking” on the exits to merge traffic.

This encourages dangerous driving, as I found out when I tried the outside lane when heading in the Sandown direction; you are relying on those on the inside lane giving way as you force your way onto the single lane road. The road markings said I could do it; I only hope there is no serious accident there when the summer visitors try negotiating an unfamiliar roundabout with appalling markings.

Asda roundabout: Version 3?
As a suggestion, why not have each of the three lanes on the approach to the roundabout to have a single exit destination; deliveries, Asda and Sandown?

As it stands there is no independent lane marked for the store that the roundabout was created for.

Road to nowhere?
Would someone from the council like to explain the arrow pointing to the right in the outside lane?

Where exactly is that exit then given that we can only suppose the straight on arrows mean the Sandown Road and not the Asda exit which although is the middle of three exits seems to be referred to as a left turn?

Arrow on the move?
Is this right turn arrow the one missing from the motorway which despite complaints remains missing as you approach the B&Q turn off at St. Mary’s roundabout?

Has it migrated? I think we should be told.

Unnecessary steering
As for the road leading up to the roundabout towards Newport from Blackwater. The road is angled in just as you approach the roundabout forcing everyone to turn the steering wheel to the right; probably to align the traffic to the roundabout because it looks better on the plans.

Then everyone has to do a sharp left with the steering wheel to get round the roundabout. This causes vehicles to overhang the lane markings on the roundabout and impede those using the outside lane. Again there is no individual right turn lane for the store that the roundabout was built to serve, but two lanes for Newport which then are quickly zipped into one.

Asda roundabout: Version 4?
As a suggestion, I would remove the curbing that forces the traffic to the right on the approach to the roundabout, so that it is possible to keep within the lanes and also to have just one lane for straight on to Newport and the other lane for the store.

This would eliminate the need for the ridiculous zip exit especially with the pedestrian crossing coming up.

Further along the road there is the misleading road arrows past the pedestrian crossing chicane with both arrows pointing forwards when quite clearly the arrow on the left should be pointing to the left as the left hand lane is for left turn only. Is it any wonder that there are numerous sudden lane changes as drivers find themselves in the wrong lane? What will it be like in the holiday season when there are many people unfamiliar with the roads on the Island?

Re-adjust light timings
Whilst agreeing that the traffic lights at the Shide junction are an improvement, perhaps the timings need to be adjusted as there are regular queues on the main road.

The lights don’t seem to allow sufficient time for traffic to flow before changing again.

Pedestrian access
I note that there is now a sign placed by Asda at the roundabout informing pedestrians not to walk up the vehicle access road.

It wasn’t that long ago that Cllr Geoff Brodie was asking for the back road used from Pan to be made safer for pedestrians yet the IWC suggested that pedestrians should be using St Georges Way to get to the store. Maybe not then? Has the pedestrian route been improved yet?

Get a grip on reality
And as for the next set of improvements around Newport, someone really needs to get a grip on reality before implementing some of the changes; in particular would be changing the mini roundabouts under the motorway by Lidl to two lanes.

Many motorists have difficulty negotiating who is first with a single lane of traffic; with two it will be chaos. And where exactly will these motorists be going? Why, into the next set of lights to stand still for longer. And could you actually get two lanes in given the lack of available land without some major construction?

Island roads are different
I suggest the IWC buy a pot of white paint and change the outside lane of the southbound motorway from “Town Centre” to include Sandown. Then watch as traffic magically disappears off the motorway quicker because Sandown traffic isn’t clogging up the inside lane. And yes, I know, many just sail down the outside lane and cut in, but many also patiently wait.

Island roads are different. Remember those signs coming off the ferries years ago?

Perhaps they should be brought back into service.

Image: © Google Maps/Streetview

Friday, 20th April, 2018 5:59pm


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Filed under: Central Wight, Island-wide, Letter to the Editor, Newport

Any views or opinions presented in the comments below are solely those of the author and do not represent those of OnTheWight.

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4 Comments on "Letter: Several ideas of how to improve the ASDA roundabout"

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Geoff Brodie
Fact check – the ‘Asda’ roundabout is the other end of the main ‘spine road’ through Pan Meadows. Check the relevant planning approval from December 2009. It and the small section of new road up to Pan Lane was actually paid for by Barratts who paid the IW Council to deliver that element of the (still incomplete) spine road – Godric Road, not Pan Lane on the… Read more »
Most of these points are entirely valid; I wouldn’t have designed the roundabout like that. There’s too much carriageway around its east side (past the Asda exit) but as it’s now there, the southbound approach lanes should be marked basically as Colin suggests (‘PAN’ in Lane 1 / ‘STORE’ in lane 2 / ‘SANDOWN’ in lane 3). Otherwise, what is lane 3 there for? (apart from allowing… Read more »
there is another junction that needs review. It is at the Hare and Hounds at Arreton. Traffic heading towards Newport/Wootton invariably gets held up by traffic trying to turn right towards Ryde. It is common for Newport-bound traffic to sit through two or three changes until the right turns are done. It needs with a passing bay for Newport-bound traffic or a right-turn only step in the… Read more »

“Then watch as traffic magically disappears off the motorway quicker because Sandown traffic isn’t clogging up the inside lane.”…what motorway is that?

There’s a dual carriageway but no motorway,not on the Island.