Thane Road – Nottingham’s Newest Road

A brand new road on a disused Boots industrial site will enable rat running and has badly designed shared use footways for cycling.
It will open sometime soon in 2020.

The new road [map] will serve a new residential and commercial business park area.

Regeneration Of Boots Enterprise Zone Masterplan – Thane Road [Original PDF]
The new road highlighted in pink.

Enabling more rat running in Beeston

This road will create multiple new rat runs in Beeston in Nottingham. Bypassing the main roads, encouraging traffic to use this new bypass, through residential areas.

The New Road, the existing traffic route, and newly created traffic routes.

These new traffic routes will enable traffic to drive from the A52 Trunk Road in the East, onto the A6005 Queens Road, and University Boulevard in the West, by opening up access to Humber Road South, Beacon Road, Lilac Grove and Station Road.

Station Road, Lilac Grove, Beacon Road and Humber Road South will all see an increase in traffic because of the new Thane Road

There’s an acknowledgement in the design that speeding traffic will be a problem from the beginning. Speed cushions are part of the design from the outset.

Speed Cushions designed in from the start – An indication that speeding and rat running is acknowledged as a problem from the outset. [Original layout PDF]

Badly designed shared use footways for cycling

There is an unsegregated shared use footway along the entire new road.

Lazy design. Very little attention has been paid to the junctions which have nice wide radius curves allowing people driving to turn in and out at speed, instead of tight radii.

The footways are discontinuous, people cycling and walking will be expected to give way to vehicles turning in and out.

The Nottingham Cycle Design Guide is reasonably good on this, but has been ignored.

Nottingham Cycling Design Guide – Side Roads
  • Reduced width – Ignored
  • Tight radii – Ignored
  • Raised crossing – Ignored
  • Contrasting surface – Ignored
Nottingham Cycling Design Guide – Side Roads

There is a parallel zebra crossing that connects a shared use footway at the top, with a shared use path at the bottom.

Parallel Zebra crossing on Thane Road

The crossing is on a 90 degree bend – people cycling will have to make difficult turn of head movements to check that it is safe to cross.

The crossing is not on a raised table.

The shared use footway at the bottom requires someone cycling to make a very sharp turn to use the crossing instead of the path being in line with the crossing.

The off road path at the top requires someone cycling to make a series of very sharp turns to use, the paths are designed with sharp corners, instead of smooth curves.

Paralel Zebra, very tight turns required to use, especially if more than one person is using it at once.

Belisha Beacon poles will probably mean that the will be obstacles to avoid when using this crossing and I’m concerned that the while rectangles on the satellite image are electrical/control boxes in the middle of the footway.

Everything in the Nottingham Cycle Design Guide seems to have been ignored.

Nottingham Cycling Design Guide – Parallel crossings


This is a brand new road, on an empty site.
The designers have chosen outdated designs straight out of the 70s. Cycling is an afterthought, permitted on poorly designed footways.
New rat run routes are enabled.

This new road shows that Nottingham still has a long way to go.

6 replies on “Thane Road – Nottingham’s Newest Road”

Very good article, well thought out and clearly describing the issues. Once again the movement of metal death machines is more important than, well, everything.
I can’t believe shared use paths are even allowed, especially on new builds.

It’s not as if there’s any lack of space to enable a segregated cycle path here, as stated shared use paths are ludicrous. I also feel there should be a width restriction at the top end of this. HGV/LGVs going to the new units should be able to get in via A52 Thane road but increasing HGV flow through Humber road should be prevented at all costs. Width restriction would also force speed reduction for other vehicles.

Thanks for the great rundown of the design of the road and the area, really in-depth analysis. I guess this is why it’s still not open to the public yet?

I don’t think that’s why, I don’t think any changes are planned.
I’m really not 100% sure why it’s not open yet, a few people have chased the councils on Twitter, but nothing except ‘nearly finished/it’ll be soon’.

One thing no one ever considers in articles about this new road, is the existing traffic of Boots employees using Thane road to get to and from work. And trust me it is a murder on any day with cars queuing all the way to the site and along the site`s roads during the rush hour. Any traffic joining from this new rat run will not only add to the already difficult situation, but will also themselves get gridlocked once they join the Thane road. Whoever planned this clearly have not researched the current situation with the Thane road traffic.

Yeah because a 20MPH road with speed humps seemingly every metre is a ‘rat run’. I agree the cycle paths are lazy but if the traffic is moving so slowly then why not just use the road itself? Don’t expect cycle lanes to be built everywhere for a couple of moaner’s benefit – we need equality for all road users, bike, pedestrian, car, bus etc. This stupid design now slows down bus journey times too and since most engines are inefficient at 20 mph so more pollution will be caused.

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