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Bus retrofits to replace best ones transferred to Leeds

September 14, 2018 6:40 PM

308 busFor several years, Liberal Democrats Councillors have raised the problem of poor air quality around the Coast Road. The problem is particularly intense around the junctions, i.e. Cradlewell, Corner House & Benfield Road, where there are often queues of standing traffic.

In response to a question from the Liberal Democrats, it's been confirmed that 227 buses in Tyneside are to be upgraded - but not replacing the highest standard Euro 6 buses which were withdrawn and sent to Leeds when that Council imposed draconian new rules on air quality.

Councillor Doreen Huddart said "The Corner House junction has one of the two remaining school crossing patrols in the city, while the others are well used by residents en-route to school or work. The area also has one of the main cycle routes to and from the city. More recently, the adverse effects of traffic noise & emissions on resident's health have again been highlighted by academic research, which Councillors in Manor Park have raised with Council staff. One of the constant complaints from residents relates to standing traffic and concerns about the impact more new build developments will have on traffic congestion and poor air quality. "

Labour's responsible Cabinte Member replied : "We recognise the problems caused by both congestion and exposure to poor quality air and high levels of noise and are committed to addressing this as an authority and becoming one of the most innovative and clean cities in Northern Europe.

"The Council is continuing to develop its feasibility study for improving air quality in conjunction with North Tyneside and Gateshead Councils. The study will be published and consulted upon soon with engagement from all stakeholders.

"We have received significant government funding to retrofit 227 buses in Tyneside to the latest engine standards. This includes the 308, 306, 309/310 and 1 buses which run along or near to the Coast Road in Newcastle and North Tyneside. Retrofitting these buses will help improve the local air quality along the Coast Road."

Doreen commented : "I will be keeping up the pressure by asking further questions about dates for the retro fitting and other issues."