Statement from Hounslow Council on trial traffic management scheme at Staveley Road/Park Road
Published: Tuesday, 15th September 2020
As part of the Council’s Streetspace programme to reduce traffic, make roads safer and improve air quality, as well as create more space for people to walk and cycle, the Council plans to install a barrier at Staveley Road/Park Road junction on a trial basis. Construction was due to start on this scheme on Monday 14 September. However, a number of residents attended the site to restrict access for Hounslow Highway’s street maintenance team, preventing works from starting.
The implementation of this scheme builds on engagement undertaken through the wider South Chiswick Liveable Neighbourhood programme which started in 2019. The feedback from residents, schools, businesses and local community groups has been reviewed along with data on traffic volumes, speeds and movements across the area. Comments received about traffic along Staveley Road all concur that currently the road is seen as dangerous for pedestrians and cyclists alike and that the existing traffic calming measures are not effective. You can learn more about the project and view the consultation comments on the project website here.
In May this year, the Government issued new statutory guidance under the 2004 Traffic Management Act, in response to Covid-19, requiring councils to act as ‘swiftly as possible’ given the urgent need to change travel habits before restrictions are eased so that people can walk or cycle safely while observing social distancing. This scheme is part of a number of trial measures the Council brought forward aiming to transform the area into being a ‘low traffic neighbourhood’, preventing motorists from using residential streets as a cut through between major roads. Our Streetspace programme also supports some of the key aims of the Council’s Transport Strategy and Air Quality and Climate Emergency action plans.
The Council understands the concerns raised by residents about the potential impact of this Streetspace scheme, in particular removing a traffic island which currently provides a useful crossing point of Staveley Road. The traffic island needs to be removed to allow access for larger vehicles such as refuse trucks, when the new barrier preventing through traffic is installed. The barrier will significantly reduce the speed and volume of traffic on this road, making crossing far easier and safer for pedestrians and cyclists.
It is important to emphasise that this scheme is being introduced on a trial basis and we will be carefully monitoring the scheme post implementation to ensure that it achieves its objective of preventing through traffic and ensuring the safety of pedestrians and cyclists while reducing noise and pollution in the area. We welcome all comments and insights that members of the public may have while this trial measure is in place. These will help inform any future decisions around it. You can do this through either participating in our online consultation: https://haveyoursay.hounslow.gov.uk/traffic-and-transport/streetspace-feedback or by emailing our transport team on firstname.lastname@example.org
Cllr Hanif Khan, Cabinet Member for Transport at Hounslow Council said:
“I want to reassure residents that, as with all of our Streetspace schemes, this is a genuine trial and that officers and Councillors retain an open mind as to whether this is the right solution for this location. We do however continue to believe there is merit in the proposals as a way of achieving the objectives of the Streetspace programme, and would like to implement this as soon as possible to get the trial underway so that we can understand the effect of the scheme and amend if necessary in the light of actual impact.
“It’s important to remember the bigger picture about what we’re trying to achieve. We want to reallocate space on our roads to enable people to walk and cycle safely, reducing air pollution and supporting more active, healthy lifestyles and stopping people using residential streets as rat-runs. This may inconvenience some, but we know that many residents support this scheme too.
“We very much value feedback provided by local road users on this and other schemes which will be an important consideration in determining whether or not to make this arrangement permanent. We expect to take the decision in the first half of 2021.
“We know there will be some people who are inconvenienced by Streetspace measures, and we know many people are very supportive of them. However, it is not acceptable for people to physically stop these trials just because they don’t want them. Please air your views using our consultation or by emailing our transport team, rather than putting yourselves and our Highways Team at risk.”