Update on the traffic signals at Fairmilehead Crossroads

Below is an update on the traffic signals at Fairmilehead Crossroads. A few years ago I was promised that this junction would be completely overhauled, and that this could address the issues vehicles turning right from Buckstone Terrace on to Oxgangs Road face. This has now been “reprioritised”, but after a bit of fuss the Council has agreed to upgrade the signals infrastructure. As part of this the junction will be improved for pedestrians (esp those with visual impairments) and changes to the right turn on to Oxgangs Road will be considered.

I am also in the process of asking the Council about the very short green man time of the Biggar Road leg of the junction.

Fairmilehead Crossroads Update
Thank you for your enquiry of 18 August 2021 on behalf of your constituent regarding the introduction of a right turn filter into the traffic signal sequence at the above location.  I was sorry to hear of the issues your constituent is experiencing whilst traversing through the junction.

The traffic signal sequence currently has a right turn filter for vehicles turning from Biggar Road into Frogston Road West.  This movement has a very high flow with the opposing vehicles turning right into Oxgangs Road relatively low.

To allow for the introduction of two opposing right turn manoeuvres, they would need to be separately signalled on a red/amber/green signal and the north/south movements stopped to allow for this to happen.

Alternatively, the north/south movements would have to operate separately as per the current east west movement.  However, the current road layout does not allow for the separate signalling of the right turners.  If the north/south movement was to run separately this would lead to lengthy delays on all arms of the junction and an increase to pedestrian waiting times.

Although there are junction improvement works programmed for this location we are only upgrading the traffic signal infrastructure and not the actual junction constraints or road layout.

Like many junctions across the UK vehicles turning right into Oxgangs Road are expected to do so in gaps when it is safe to do so or at the end of the stage during the safety period from one stage leaving green to the next stage receiving a green signal (intergreen).  As a measure of comfort, the intergreen period for this manoeuvre has been increased by 40%.

As part of the junction improvement works, the junction timings will be looked at in detail to try and find any efficiency measures that can be introduced to improve the overall operation of the junction.  However, it should be noted that the current constraints of the junction layout may mean that it is operating as efficiently as it can.


One thought on “Update on the traffic signals at Fairmilehead Crossroads

  1. Perhaps the reason for the low number of vehicles recorded turning right on to Oxgangs Road is because local drivers have become so fed up with waiting to have something done about the Fairmilehead Crossroads traffic lights over the years that they turn right before reaching the crossroads and wend their way through the streets to reach Oxgangs Road further along. Alternatively, they could be proceeding beyond the crossroads and turning right at Swantson Ave.


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