Councillor Don Mackenzie, North Yorkshire County Council, Executive Member for Access
Councillor Don Mackenzie, North Yorkshire County Council, Executive Member for Access

Have your say on Harrogate congestion and your preferred solutions – 12 week public consultation


North Yorkshire County Council have announced plans for the public engagement on congestion inHarrogate.

The engagement is about giving a wide demographic the opportunity to give their views on the congestion problems and to also give their support for options to tackle those problems.

North Yorkshire County Council held a media briefing session today (8 April 2019) with Councillor Don Mackenzie, Executive Member for Access, Barrie Mason, assistant director (highways and transportation) and Andrew Bainbridge (Team Leader LTP, Highways and Transportation).

About the engagement

  • It will run for 12-weeks between 15 April 2019 to 8 July 2019
  • 48,000 households will be contacted by post
  • Will be widely publicised with advertising and social media
  • Responses can be made in writing or online
  • There will be 20 questions

Councillor Don Mackenzie, North Yorkshire County Council, Executive Member for Access, said:

Congestion is a problem in many ways, especially for a town that relies on visitor economy. Also for people living in the area, it leads to a poor quality of life being sat in traffic. From an air quality perspective we already have three air quality management areas (AQM’s) and others that are others very near to being designated.

There is, however, no easy solution and it is not just about if a relief road is built or not – if a relief road was not built then it avoid a significant cost, which would be good.

It is also about looking at better public transport, walking, cycling and behavioural changes.

The engagement will seek views on people’s willingness to use alternative transport means, other than a personal vehicle. For instance, people may indicate they want a better bus service, but then not actually be willing to use it themselves.

There is also a tenancy for road users stuck in traffic to look around at the other road users and view them as the problem, whereas the problem is, in-part, being caused by all users.

Click below to hear from Councillor Don Mackenzie

Click below to hear from Barrie Mason, assistant director (highways and transportation)

The engagement is about asking how significant people believe congestion is, what do they think should be done and how likely would they be in using other means.

Barrie Mason, assistant director (highways and transportation), said:

Harrogate and Knaresborough has the highest level of congestion in North Yorkshire.

The engagement will be online and we will also be mailing 48,000 households in the Harrogate and Knaresborough area.

Congestion has an impact on people’s on a day to days basis. We want to find out peoples views on how much a problem congestion is and also their views on possible solutions.

It is at an early stage and there is not detail on specific solutions though.

There are around 90,000 that live, work or visit Harrogate and we would like to hear from them all. Part of the response data is to record a postcode, so we know where people are responding from.

Although we have picked an inner relief road as an option, there is only an identified corridor, rather than a specific root.


Andrew Bainbridge (Team Leader LTP, Highways and Transportation), said:

There will be a lot of publicity around the engagement as we want a wide level of response including from people that live in Pateley Bridge and Boroughbridge.

We will be using social media, advertising and various notice boards. We found in the past, like with the Kex Gill consultation, that notice boards near queuing traffic can work well.

It is primarily a web-based consultation, but appreciate that some will need a paper version.

More detailed information will be released at the start of the consultation, along with public open events at various places in the district.

The engagement will be available online from the 15 April.

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