Traffic lights bid at nightmare Dalmahoy junction

Margaret Delaney began the petition calling for the council to act after husband Denis had several close calls at the Dalmahoy junction. Picture: Scott Taylor
Margaret Delaney began the petition calling for the council to act after husband Denis had several close calls at the Dalmahoy junction. Picture: Scott Taylor
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A “NIGHTMARE junction” is set to be transformed under plans to spend half a million pounds on new traffic lights.

Dalmahoy junction, on the A71 near the Dalmahoy Hotel, could see the introduction of traffic signals following a prolonged campaign from local residents.

Around 1500 people signed a petition launched by pensioner Margaret Delaney in April calling on the council to act before “someone is killed”.

But city chiefs admit cash has yet to be found to launch the £430,000 scheme – and have asked nearby businesses to help meet any potential future costs.

Mrs Delaney, 74, said she was driven to launch the petition after her husband, Denis, 62, suffered several close calls on the road while crossing to get to Dalmahoy gym.

She said: “I was fed up with him coming home and saying, ‘gosh, I nearly got killed this morning’.

“But why have I got to rack my brains to tell the council what to do? This is obviously a black spot, because everybody is telling us that. Of course the council should be considering these plans.”

The junction has a history of road accidents, including two collisions in the 1990s in which one person died and the other was seriously injured.

And in the past three years, four car crashes on the junction have led to injuries – with a serious accident in November last year seeing the road closed for just over an hour while first aid was given.

David Moore, manager at the Ratho Park Crown Carvery, welcomed the move and said restaurant staff had been supporting Mrs Delaney’s petition.

The 38-year-old added: “The junction is a bit of a nightmare.

“I’ve had members of staff leave work at 5pm, only to come back in at 5.30pm because they just can’t get across the road. It’s hazardous to say the least.”

The council’s transport and environment committee is set to discuss the proposals at a meeting today, but any decision on whether or not the plans will go ahead won’t be made until March next year.

Another option being considered by city officials could see vehicle-activated warning signs erected in an attempt to slow traffic down.

SNP councillor Bill Henderson has been campaigning for traffic lights on the road since 2012.

He said: “There is a real need to have traffic signals there because it’s a dangerous junction.

“The major problem is traffic – it’s just a nightmare trying to get out that junction.

“I don’t think there is any other solution. The only option for motorists and pedestrians is traffic lights. It’s dangerous to get across that road, there’s no doubt about it.

“Everybody knows it’s a nightmare. What the council has to do is find the money to fund this. I think it would be worth it, to make the area safer.”