The Loaning will be subject of fresh consultation event next week

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Residents are being asked to consider fresh options to improve road safety at The Loaning following the tragic death of a schoolgirl in February.

Dalziel High School pupil Abbie McLaren (12) was knocked down and killed by an driver with no licence who was driving at 51 miles per hour in a 30 mile zone.

The driver, Martin McGuire, is now serving a five-year jail term for death by dangerous driving.

However, intense community pressure was brought to bear on North Lanarkshire Council to bring traffic control measures to this busy stretch which is surrounded by two primary schools, a secondary school and a nursery.

This involved protests such as a torchlight vigil along The Loaning and a petition which gathered more than 12,600 signatures in less than a week.

This came to light after Motherwell Community Group pointed out that it had raised similar concerns in this newspaper back in 2017.

At that stage, however, the council claimed that police data showed no action was needed – despite these fears about speeding drivers.

Now the council has said it is dealing with feedback from a community engagement event it held in the summer, which highlighted a number of locations where road safety improvements were requested.

And this in turn will lead to another such event next week.

Paul Kelly, Depute Leader of the council, explained: “Following the initial events and online survey our consultants AECOM and our road safety team have developed a series of options for consideration

“The feedback and issues raised by locals were vital in shaping these latest proposals for improved traffic management and pedestrian facilities, in addition to those identified through site review and collision analysis. This is a community-led project, so we would like to encourage everyone to get involved.”

Andrew Diansangu from consultants AECOM, added: “In collaboration with NLC, we are working to address the issues raised by the local community.

“To ensure we meet the needs of local people AECOM will continue to work with its partners to ensure road safety is a key priority .

“We’ll be available to discuss the proposals in person at our events and have set up an online survey for those unable to attend.”

Residents and road users can view and discuss the plans at Ladywell Primary School on Wednesday, October 9, between 5.30pm-8.30pm and the Pat Cullinan Community Centre on Thursday, October 10, between 1pm-4pm.

Alternatively, interested parties can complete the online consultation from Monday, October 7, until Friday, October 25 on North Lanarkshire Council’s website