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Walnut Tree Close to Stay Closed Until April

Published on: 23 Mar, 2022
Updated on: 25 Mar, 2022

By Martin Giles

Work on the new Walnut Tree Close crossing has been extended to Friday, April 8.

The work, the latest in a series of projects that have disrupted traffic in the busy road that connects the railway station to the town centre and routes to the north, commenced on February 7 and was supposed to have been completed almost two weeks ago, on March 11.

For the previous six weeks, vehicles leaving the station wishing to head south towards Godalming or Shalford have had to go all the way to Ladymead before going back south on an alternative route.

The current work, the installation of a new pedestrian crossing, is connected with the delayed installation of a replacement Walnut Bridge, still only half-open because of problems encountered during preparatory groundwork on the riverbank by the Odeon Cinema.

In December, Cllr John Rigg (R4GV), who overseas major projects at GBC, said that the original work timetable for the bridge had “been adjusted” adding, “There have been some costs because of these delays, but they are accounted for in the overall project budget. The budget has not been increased.”

See: Walnut Bridge Installation – Phase 1 Nearing Completion

A GBC spokesperson said: “The work on the pedestrian crossing includes installation of a new road drainage system as well as the raised pedestrian crossing. The system was designed around mapped existing services underground, which were identified though records and detecting any extra cables and pipes using a scanner.

“Having started work the construction team found unmapped underground services and obstructions. This meant that a new drainage system had to be redesigned and approved before constructing it.

“The crossing is part of the work to improve pedestrian and cycle routes from Guildford Station into the town centre. Once completed the route will be much safer, pleasant and more accessible.

“The new crossing will be raised to slow vehicles and allow pedestrians to cross more safely. It will also be much wider to prevent a bottleneck approaching Walnut Bridge.

“While work on the pedestrian crossing is going on, a portion of Walnut Tree Close will be closed to vehicle traffic and diversions will be signposted. Access to the station will be possible from the south end of Walnut Tree Close and pedestrians will be able to access the Close from both ends. One side of the bridge will be open with the temporary scaffold ramp in use for pedestrians.

“There will be no access from Walnut Tree Close to the towpath by the bridge during the works, although the towpath will be open.”

Further disruption can be expected as the controversial Solum development progresses.

See also: A New Pedestrian Crossing and Yet More Disruption for Walnut Tree Close

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test 3 Responses to Walnut Tree Close to Stay Closed Until April

  1. Frank Emery Reply

    March 24, 2022 at 9:18 am

    All this lovely work to lead unsuspecting visitors to the grotty Casino Bar.

  2. Martin Elliott Reply

    March 24, 2022 at 1:38 pm

    I assume the project budget still includes a contingency to avoid the necessity of asking for more money?

    With so many unforeseen problems, it’s extremely unlikely any of the contingency will be refunded as the cost increases.

    We’ve already seen other associated costs funded. The original Bedford Wharf area extended south to the garage block. Now its reduced to the road bordering the plaza. Yet £100k was transferred from Transport Budget to landscape this “grotty” area as one councillor defended it.

    It’s claimed the Plaza will be (yet another) vibrant meeting area, but apart from the Odeon and passing cyclists/pedestrians what attraction will there be?

  3. Guy Sutlieff Reply

    March 25, 2022 at 11:44 am

    I love those “vibrant meeting places” so beloved of modern urban planners. They are always shown to be glorious car-free spaces where smart people gather on barmy August nights to drink Aperol in a Mediterranean style… but actually turn out to be deserted squares with a group of feral looking lads standing around aimlessly amongst the litter on a cold, damp November evening.

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