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Hertfordshire Highways LEA VALLEY & EASTERN HERTS AREA PLANS JOINT MEMBER PANEL UPDATE APRIL 2008 1.0 HERTFORD 1.1 Town Centre to Stations Pedestrian Study The completed study considered the pedestrian routes between the town centre and the two stations at Hertford North & East. A number of recommendations were made which are listed below, with more detail given on a crossing point outside Hertford East station. Two main options were considered for crossing improvements outside Hertford East station. A third option being to do nothing. 1) Improve Existing Crossing Facility just north of the Mill Road / Railway Street roundabout: Improvement works would include: Widening the existing island to aid pedestrians to wait safely Install tactile paving to current DfT standards Provide footway buildouts on either side of the carriageway Advantages of this option are slower vehicle speeds, pedestrian safety improvements, reduced pedestrian crossing distances, keeping the crossing point nearer the desire line and minimal street clutter. The main disadvantage is the reduced carriageway width, particularly for HGV’s. 2) Zebra Crossing off desire line: A zebra crossing could be provided to the north of the pedestrian entrance to the station. The crossing would be away from the desire line so utilisation could be potentially low. It is not possible to install a zebra crossing any closer to the Mill Road / Railway Street roundabout. Advantages of this option are safe location, reduced crossing distance (the road would be narrowed slightly) and vulnerable road users would feel more confident crossing Mill Road. Disadvantages are utilisation could be poor, reduced carriageway width for HGV’s and street clutter outside a grade 2 listed building. The feasility study recommended option one. The main reason for this being that the crossing point remains nearer to the desire line than the zebra crossing. The feasibility study also recommended the following: Provide a central refuge across Cedar Close at its junction with North Road to assist pedestrians Provide dropped kerbs including tactile paving at Cedar Close at its junction with North Road and at three locations along Railway Street. Improve fingerpost directional signage at 8 locations between the town centre and stations. Unfortunately, funding for this scheme will not be available in 2008-2009. The scheme will be put forward for funding again in 2009-2010 and other sources of funding explored. 1.2 Bengeo Traffic Study 1.2.1 BACKGROUND: A feasibility study was completed in January 2007, considering various different options to alleviate the Bengeo rat run. The study also contained the results of survey work carried out throughout Bengeo. The investigations and survey results formed the basis of the recommendation. 1.2.2 RECOMMENDATION: Carry out a six month trial on access and parking restrictions in Bengeo as follows: No right turn from Bengeo Street into Cross Road between 7.30 and 9.30am, Mondays to Fridays Allow one way traffic only in Tower Street, in a direction from Duncombe Road (eastbound) Parking restrictions on the eastern side of Byde Street, between Wellington Street and Fanshawe Street, and on both sides of Balfour Street, between Port Vale and Archers Close. These would be between 8 – 9am, Mondays to Fridays to fit in with journeys to Millmead School, allowing unimpeded access to walk to school. The trial started on Monday 28 January 2008. 1.2.3 POLICE ENFORCEMENT: The issue of Police enforcement was raised at an early stage during the feasibility study. Local members, representation from the Lower Bengeo Residents Association and the Highways Officer met with the Police to discuss the issue of the enforcement of the no right turn. The Police confirmed that they could offer regular enforcement of the restriction over the trial period. 1.2.4 MONITORING The feasibility also outlines what data will be collected during the trial period. This will be measured against data that has been collected previously before the trial started. Vehicle Counts – Has the amount of through traffic reduced in Lower Bengeo as a result of the scheme being implemented? The following would be monitored: Right Turn movements from Bengeo Street into Cross Road U-turn movements in Bengeo Street Movements to the to east of Bengeo Street to avoid the no right turn Vehicle counts in The Wick, The Avenue & Sacombe Road Vehicle speed counts Traffic impact on Bengeo Street Rat running levels through Lower Bengeo Recorded accidents over the experimental period Public Perception – Written correspondence received during the experimental period, both positive and negative, as well as the amount of objections to the traffic regulation order received, would be monitored as a guide to public perception to the scheme. Journeys to School – Are sustainable journeys to local schools, particularly Mill Mead primary school increasing? 1.2.5 MEASURING THE IMPACT On the assumption that there is a high level of Police enforcement on the no right turn a reduction of 20% rat running through Lower Bengeo would be expected. 1.2.6 DATA COLLECTION SO FAR Most of the data collection will take place during late April / May to give the opportunity for the trial to ‘bed in.’ The automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) survey will be taking place week commencing 21 April 2008. Other counts will also be taking place as outlined in section 1.2.4. A full breakdown of data collected will be given at the July JMP together with recommendations in relation to the trial. However, some information has already been collected and is summarised below: 1.2.7 NO RIGHT TURN INTO CROSS ROAD FROM BENGEO STREET Number of vehicles illegally turning right into Cross Road from Bengeo Street: CROSS ROAD: Wed 30 January Thu 14 February Wed 16 April 7:30 – 8:00 86 - 13 8:00 – 8:30 67 - 6 8:30 – 9:00 51 25 - 9:00 – 9:30 58 24 - Vehicles turning right into The Avenue were also measured at the same times as the counts that were carried out on Wednesday 16 April. Number of vehicles turning right into The Avenue from Bengeo Street: THE AVENUE: Wed 16 April 7:30 – 8:00 65 8:00 – 8:30 73 1.2.8 PENALTY TICKETS ISSUED The latest information provided by the Police on tickets issued for the illegal no right turn are as follows: Date No. of penalty tickets issued 29 January 8 28 February 21 03 March 31 04 March 20 Further tickets have been issued since, a verbal update will be given at the meeting. 1.2.9 PUBLIC PERCEPTION At the time of writing the Council had received 13 telephone calls or emails in relation to the trial. Most of the comments received initially were in relation to enforcement of the ‘no right turn.’ More recently comments have been made about an increase in vehicles using The Avenue with a higher enforcement level in Cross Road. 1 objection has been received in writing to the traffic regulation order. Articles in the press have also followed a similar pattern with initial complaints over enforcement followed more recently by complaints of increased traffic along The Avenue. 1.2.10 MILLMEAD SCHOOL As part of the scheme the highway authority has been working with Millmead School to increase walking to school. The part time parking restrictions in Balfour Street and Byde Street were installed to support the lollibus (walking bus with lollipop person) from Westfield Road. A second lollibus started on 12 March from Sele Farm to the school. Cycle and scooter shelters have also been installed at the school. Details of numbers using the lollibus will be provided at the JMP. 1.2.11 SUMMARY TO DATE The number of vehicles illegally turning into Cross Road has reduced since the start of the trial. Complaints have been received that vehicles are still rat running by taking a route down The Avenue instead. The extent of the rat running issue can be objectively measured once the ANPR survey has taken place wc. 21 April 2008. Full analysis on the data collected will be provided in the July JMP report, together with a recommendation on a way forward. 1.3 Hertford Urban Transport Plan Funding has been provisionally allocated for the above to be completed in 2009-10. This will be confirmed in March 2009. This document will consider the transport needs for Hertford and provide guide the development of schemes over the coming years. 2.0 WARE 2.1 Wulfrath Way & Quincey Road Traffic Calming Funding has been allocated to consider physical traffic calming features along these roads to reduce speeds. Any such features will have to be bus friendly. Before any works take place local residents will be surveyed early in the year to ascertain the level of support for such a scheme. 2.2 Tower Road Design work is nearing completion on improving the crossing point outside Tower School. Works will also include highlighting to drivers the presence of children by implementing a ‘school safety zone.’ The pedestrian entrance to the school will also be relocated nearer to the crossing point to further encourage use. Funding for the scheme has been confirmed. It is planned for the works to take place in the school summer holidays so as to minimise disruption. 2.3 Station Road A small enhancement scheme to improve the entrance and access to the station has been finalised. This includes a formalised taxi rank, landscaping, seating and a general tidy up of the area. Negotiations are ongoing with Taylor Wimpey (housing developer) and Network Rail over taking some of their land into the highway so that the scheme can progress. To speed up the process both parties have agreed that the County Council being appointed as their legal representative which also reduces cost. It is anticipated that all the legal paperwork will be completed by the Summer. Works will be programmed for later in the year. 2.4 Ware Urban Transport Plan Funding has been provisionally allocated for the above to be completed in 2009-10. This will be confirmed in March 2009. This document will consider the transport needs for Ware and provide guide the development of schemes over the coming years. 3.0 BISHOPS STORTFORD 3.1 Villiers-sur-Marne Avenue and Friedberg Avenue Pedestrian Study New footway works along Villiers-sur-Marne Avenue to improve accessibility to the Thorley Centre will be nearing completion by the end of April 2008. Phase 2 works in the area have now had their funding confirmed. Design work is nearing completion and it is planned for the works to commence in early Summer 2008. Works include: A pelican crossing to be installed on Villiers-sur-Marne Avenue by the Thorley Centre at the existing bus stop location. Bus lay-by to be infilled and moved further down the road. An informal crossing point on Friedberg Avenue and a new footway built to link the crossing point with the side access path to the Thorley Centre. 3.2 Dunmow Road & Haymeads Lane junction See separate report. 3.3 Thorn Grove Cycle Link All works were completed in the last quarter of 2007-2008. 3.4 Bishops Stortford signage Funding has been confirmed to complete the design and delivery of this project. It’s primary focus is to improve signing for traffic travelling east-west so that the town centre is not further congested.
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