The National Roads Authority is installing a new traffic signal on South Sound Road in an effort to ease traffic on Crewe Road and Linford Pierson Highway during evening rush hour. The signal is expected to begin operating on 19 Aug.
In a news release, the agency said the traffic feeding into the Grand Harbour roundabout from South Sound is partially responsible for the lengthy backups that occur on Crewe Road, which sometimes also stretch to most of the length of Linford Pierson.
“Motorists travelling east from single-lane South Sound Road onto the roundabout have priority over motorists using the two eastbound travel lanes on Crewe Road,” the release said. “This forces them to give way to the right, creating traffic queues extending back onto Linford Pierson Highway.”
The new signal will be set back from the roundabout. A painted stop bar on the road will indicate where cars are required to stop and wait until the red light turns amber, allowing cars to move to the current roundabout limit, where they will still have to yield to traffic coming from the right. The lights will cycle every 10 to 12 seconds.
“The traffic meter is going to allow gaps in the eastbound evening peak traffic flow on South Sound Road, that will in turn cause eastbound traffic on the main artery to flow through Grand Harbour Roundabout much faster,” said NRA Acting Managing Director Ed Howard.
The signal will only operate during peak traffic times Monday through Friday, typically between 4:30‑6:30pm. A 2018 study found that an average of 4,821 cars use the roundabout during that time period.
“The NRA notes that this is an interim solution, before more detailed plans for traffic relief in this area,” the release said.
The new signal pole on South Sound Road will also soon feature the installation of the first set of electronic vehicle registration detection devices designed to read the new registration stickers and plates.