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Birmingham City Council

Glossary of Road Terms

A-Z Road Terms

Road Adoption

This is an agreement between the Council and private developers usually concerned with new roads. If agreed, the road in question becomes the council's responsibility. More on road naming...

Road Closures

Sometimes, works on the highway, or some large deliveries, require a road to be closed temporarily to general traffic. Such closures require a traffic regulation order issued by the highway authority.

Road Gullies

Gutters (the channels at the side of the road) steer rainwater into gullies, which in turn are connected to a public sewer or highway drain buried under the road. Due to leaves/debris/grit, which gets collected in the gully pot after a rain, these road gullies get blocked and cause roadside flooding which the Council can address.

Road Humps

Their purpose is to reduce the number and severity of road traffic accidents by reducing driver speed. They can only be installed on roads with a speed limit of 30mph or less, and where street lighting is present. Road humps are usually between 25mm and 100mm high, have a minimum length of 900mm, be either curved or flat topped and be spaced between 20m and 150m. When road humps are to be installed on a street the Council consults with the residents, the Emergency Services and bus operators.

Road Markings and Signs

Road signs and markings are used as a means of informing drivers, cyclists and pedestrians of changes to the road layout ahead and the existence of certain restrictions. Very many circumstances require signs and markings. For the sake of consistency, many signs have been drawn up by the Department of Transport and legally enforced by Parliament.

Traffic signs come in various colours and styles, depending on the type of information they need to convey. Each sign has a specially coated front, to enhance its` visibility when headlights are shone onto it.

Road Naming

Transportation strategy and highways information are responsible for carrying out the naming of new roads and property numbering. For further information visit the Adopted Roads and Highways - Road Naming section.

Road Opening Permits

This is what is required by Street developers or Public Utility Companies in order to excavate roads and footpaths.

Road Safety

Our team of officers are committed to making Birmingham's road users as informed about road safety as possible. We promote road safety through education training and publicity for all ages and types of road user, from pre-school children to the elderly.

Working with engineers in Highways and Transportation Strategy, we publicise changes in the road environment aimed at improving safety. More on Road Safety...

Road Works

Often roads develop natural faults or wear out and need repairing. This information is available in the Street Repairs section.

Road Winter Maintenance

The Highways group, part of the Development Directorate of Birmingham City Council, is responsible for providing the Winter Maintenance Service for the City of Birmingham. This service operates from the end of October through to the middle of April each year and during this period the councils fleet of 30 gritters, together with associated equipment, is on standby 24 hours a day ready to treat the roads when required. More on Winter Maintenance