Traffic lights by Christmas

The manual traffic director may soon be a thing of the past in Basseterre as the Government is ready to install traffic lights in high traffic areas.

Drivers in St. Kitts will soon have to contend with traffic lights as the authorities try and find solutions to traffic congestion in Basseterre.

During rush hour period on a daily basis a traffic warden can be seen at the junction of  Fort Street, Cayon Street and Victoria Road directing traffic in that busy area in downtown Basseterre.

The traffic lights are set to be installed in the previously mentioned area, at the junction of Fort Street and the Bay Road and in the vicinity of the round-a-bout where Wellington Road, Pond Road and Cayon Street meets.

Speaking with media personnel Minister of Public Infrastructure and Transport Ian ‘Patches’ Liburd gave an update on the move noting that there is hope they might be operational before Christmas.

“The traffic light programme is ongoing the contractors are on the ground and as you may see they are already cutting the roads. We are hopeful that the first phase of that project would be completed before Christmas.”

Liburd reminded that his ministry undertook a traffic survey that helped them identify the areas best to install traffic lights.

He added that the lights would help manage the flow of traffic on a scientific basis.

“Traffic lights help to manage the flow of traffic yes you would have manual conducting of traffic but we will move on a more scientific basis.”

Liburd admitted that the traffic lights wont totally eased the congestion but would definitely help.

He also reiterated that a more scientific approach to remodelling traffic is needed in control traffic flow in the heart of the capital.

“What I would like to see and have suggested to the Traffic and Public Safety board is that we take a more scientific approach to traffic. Transport is a science, and if you look at a tree it has a trunk and we have two main trunks in the traffic network, the Bay Road and on Cayon Street and a lot of branches –the minor roads.”

Head of the Traffic Department, Inspector Carl Caines last week speaking on the radio indicated that work on the installations started on November 18th and should be functional by Christmas.

“So far it’s on stream, it is here, and we now have to do our educational drive because some of us are not aware, some of us don’t know how to use them, so in the meantime we’ll use this opportunity to educate the public. All of us will have to comply with the laws in regards to the street lights.”

He was also confident that motorist will be able transition well to the use of traffic lights.