Oxford City Council has still not reviewed the junction outside the Kings Arms, despite the death of a student there in 2007.
As a result, a motion for road safety outside the Kings Arms has been passed without opposition at this week’s OUSU council. It proposed an urgent review into the safety of the junction, and suggested a pedestrian crossing be installed, as well as road markings for cyclists.
There is currently an online petition for the improvement of road user safety outside the Kings Arms, which has been signed by more than 680 people.
The petition states that “Hundreds of road users every day have to double-guess each others actions and this can be fatal once again if someone is in a rush. The council must drop its excuses and act now.”
The petition proposes an immediate installation of cyclist and pedestrian lights on the junction, as well as a new configuration of traffic lights sequence, which will ensure safety and peace of mind for all road users.
The OUSU motion suggested that the petition should be promoted through local media in order to elicit action from the Council.
It is also stated in the petition that the council spent time discussing with the university representatives ways of improving safety at the junction and decided on creating a space similar to the one in front of the Clarendon Centre, which would be incorporated into a major re-design of Broad Street.
Leah Jesnick, a first-year at St Hugh’s student commented: “My friend almost got run over on that junction. It is very irresponsible of the Council to not have done anything about it.”
Another student said “I always jump the lights in that junction. I know that it is dangerous but otherwise you have to wait for ages to be able to cross.”
Oxford City Council released a statement which read, “Work to look at possible alterations for this junction is ongoing and the council is planning to go to a stakeholder consultation soon on an outline scheme, which includes removing traffic signals.”
“The council has had to take into account Oxford University’s plans for major alterations to the Bodleian New Library on the north side of Broad Street to see how their plans will interact with ours.”
There are also no provisions at the junction to assist people with disabilities.