Parking on a cycle lane in Sleaford’s Boston Road has become illegal after plans by Lincolnshire highways chiefs upgraded it from advisory to mandatory.
Lincolnshire County Council is reacting to ongoing concerns from residents about the dangers of motorists parking on the cycle lane, marked by a broken white line, forcing cyclists to swing into the line of traffic and hampering visibility for pedestrians crossing.
Continuous white lines for the new mandatory lanes have now been painted along both sides of the road stretching from the railway bridge to New Street. The only stretch left to do is in front of the park where cars were already in the way.
The existing cycle lane, on the Recreation Ground side of the road, was only classed as an advisory cycle lane eaning motorists knew they would not be breaking the law by parking there - for free. Many of the cars were believed to be left by drivers heading into town to work all day, or using the recreation ground.
It comes in the wake of Tesco announcing it was shelving plans for a new store in the town, throwing plans for a link road into doubt.
The new lanes wilwere said to be enforceable from Monday August 24.
Rowan Smith, area highways manager for the council, said: “Originally, we had planned to consult on the change when the new link road was built, but following the recent announcement from one of the main developers, we have decided to consult on the mandatory cycle lane sooner rather than later.”
Mr Smith said: “This will mean that the current parking habits of some will have to change.”
He said it will make it safer for cyclists and pedestrians using the road.
The change in restrictions has been advertised locally as well as going out to public consultation.
Mark Couling, from Sleaford, raised concern via social media about parking on the road. On hearing the plans, he said: “I just think it will make the whole road safer. I pulled out the little car park next to the Rec and really struggled to see either way just because of the amount of cars parked there. It will be safer for parents crossing to and from the Rec and safer for cyclists as they won’t need to be on the main part of the road.”