Plans to make part of Vicarage Road one-way and bring in parking scheme branded 'ill-conceived' and a safety risk

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First published in News Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author by , Senior Reporter

Plans to make part of Vicarage Road one-way and bring in a residents parking scheme have been branded "ill-conceived" and a safety risk by people who use the road.

Hertfordshire County Council sent letters to residents and businesses along Vicarage Road asking for feedback on the proposals, which lay out an access plan for the proposed new Vicarage Road tube station.

The scheme details a new northbound one-way system between Scammel Way and Hagden Lane, a "kiss and drop" lay-by in Scammel Way to serve the proposed new station and a parking study on the wider area.

The area of Vicarage Road in question is well used by the residents of the Holywell estate, allotment holders and parents of children at the Laurence Haines School.

Vicarage Road resident David Pennie criticised the lack of consultation, saying more input was needed from local residents and called for a public meeting at the school as has happened with other developments and parts of the rail project.

Mr Pennie said: "Making the road one-way and removing some of the existing traffic calming - put in after previous accidents and deaths - would lead to risk of faster traffic here and further bottle necking around Hagden Lane and Tolpits Lane, the only entrance to the estate.

"Having a kiss and drop off for the station is ill-conceived. The station is aimed to be for people using the hospital, football stadium and locals who live within walking distance - there should be no drop off.

"If there has to be a drop off, why not use the space on Tolpits Lane's old station and put the entrance there, or better High Street, Junction or Ascot Road?"

Mr Pennie continued that the suggested changes would be dangerous around the entrance to the "blind bridge" in Vicarage Road - next to the primary school.

Councillor Nigel Bell said the proposals would be a major change for Vicarage Road and the surrounding area in West Watford.

He said: "This is an initial consultation. Residents are concerned about the possibility of bringing in a one-way and the possibility of a controlled parking zone - although this would be up to the borough council."

Tom Ship, spokesman for Hertfordshire County Council, said: "We are consulting residents on the provision of improved highway and pedestrian facilities along Vicarage Road.

"Proposals include the introduction of a new northbound one-way system on Vicarage Road between Scammel Way and Hagden Lane, including carriageway realignment, improved crossing facilities and footway widening. 

"Further proposals include a new ‘Kiss and Drop’ lay-by on Scammel Way to serve the proposed new station on Vicarage Road, plus a study of parking in the wider area.

"Hertfordshire County Council began the public consultation on 11 August and will run through the course of the month, allowing residents and businesses who may be affected by proposals to channel their feedback back to the county council."

Comments (13)

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6:08pm Wed 20 Aug 14

pr76uk says...

Anything that improves Vicarage Road traffic flow must be a good thing. As for his objections: it's not that near the allotments, the station would inevitably mean a crossing and therefore improved safety measures at the bridge, and why put it in a different road that's not near the station? They tried this at Junction and look how well that turned out!
Anything that improves Vicarage Road traffic flow must be a good thing. As for his objections: it's not that near the allotments, the station would inevitably mean a crossing and therefore improved safety measures at the bridge, and why put it in a different road that's not near the station? They tried this at Junction and look how well that turned out! pr76uk
  • Score: 1

6:19pm Wed 20 Aug 14

Cuetip says...

Thiught that part of the rationale behind this station was that because it was accessible in a very densely populated part of Watford, was that it would decrease road traffic in the surrounding areas.

It does seem to provide the perfect smoke screen to create another tax making scheme as the Watford Business Park and ensuring those who need to use these roads longer on the road.

Where are the impact studies for this quick fit option?
Thiught that part of the rationale behind this station was that because it was accessible in a very densely populated part of Watford, was that it would decrease road traffic in the surrounding areas. It does seem to provide the perfect smoke screen to create another tax making scheme as the Watford Business Park and ensuring those who need to use these roads longer on the road. Where are the impact studies for this quick fit option? Cuetip
  • Score: 4

10:01pm Wed 20 Aug 14

The Rover says...

Placing the station on Vicarage Road was a bad decision. It would have made far more sense to have the station on Tolpits Lane where the old station was. There is land that could have been a drop off zone, car park etc. Instead they are having to create space where there is none.
Placing the station on Vicarage Road was a bad decision. It would have made far more sense to have the station on Tolpits Lane where the old station was. There is land that could have been a drop off zone, car park etc. Instead they are having to create space where there is none. The Rover
  • Score: 5

11:22pm Wed 20 Aug 14

GWH123 says...

Awful idea. Scammell Way is not equipped to become a main road, there are two bottlenecks because of cars parked on the road and would increase the traffic in Hagden Lane / Tolpits Lane. No idea why this is considered necessary!
Awful idea. Scammell Way is not equipped to become a main road, there are two bottlenecks because of cars parked on the road and would increase the traffic in Hagden Lane / Tolpits Lane. No idea why this is considered necessary! GWH123
  • Score: 6

9:22am Thu 21 Aug 14

LocalBoy1 says...

Lets see shall we? Herts CC have a habit of building road schemes and then scrapping them. The traffic lights to the town hall roundabouts (for those who remember) .... the traffic lights to Watford Junction station and how many times has the St Albans bus lane scheme been changed?. Oh and I nearly forgot, the infamous Woodmere Avenue width restrictors, now there's a Herts CC classic.
Lets see shall we? Herts CC have a habit of building road schemes and then scrapping them. The traffic lights to the town hall roundabouts (for those who remember) .... the traffic lights to Watford Junction station and how many times has the St Albans bus lane scheme been changed?. Oh and I nearly forgot, the infamous Woodmere Avenue width restrictors, now there's a Herts CC classic. LocalBoy1
  • Score: 4

1:02pm Thu 21 Aug 14

TRT says...

pr76uk wrote:
Anything that improves Vicarage Road traffic flow must be a good thing. As for his objections: it's not that near the allotments, the station would inevitably mean a crossing and therefore improved safety measures at the bridge, and why put it in a different road that's not near the station? They tried this at Junction and look how well that turned out!
Obviously living in a different part of Watford. The Holywell allotment entrance IS ON the narrow section of road proposed for one way treatment. You couldn't actually get the allotments any closer to the new station than is currently without growing carrots in the drainpipes for the station roof!

There should be a station entrance at Tolpits Road. In fact, there will be one; the emergency exit for the platforms. A proper walkway wouldn't add much to the cost - WBC could have saved that money by not wasting it on pond bridges and purple flags. It would solve a lot of the traffic problems the station will create.

The detailed plans are now available from the deepest darkest depths of the TfL server, somewhere. I have a copy I downloaded a few months ago, concerned about the run-off problem, drain levels and flooding in part of the nearby estate.
[quote][p][bold]pr76uk[/bold] wrote: Anything that improves Vicarage Road traffic flow must be a good thing. As for his objections: it's not that near the allotments, the station would inevitably mean a crossing and therefore improved safety measures at the bridge, and why put it in a different road that's not near the station? They tried this at Junction and look how well that turned out![/p][/quote]Obviously living in a different part of Watford. The Holywell allotment entrance IS ON the narrow section of road proposed for one way treatment. You couldn't actually get the allotments any closer to the new station than is currently without growing carrots in the drainpipes for the station roof! There should be a station entrance at Tolpits Road. In fact, there will be one; the emergency exit for the platforms. A proper walkway wouldn't add much to the cost - WBC could have saved that money by not wasting it on pond bridges and purple flags. It would solve a lot of the traffic problems the station will create. The detailed plans are now available from the deepest darkest depths of the TfL server, somewhere. I have a copy I downloaded a few months ago, concerned about the run-off problem, drain levels and flooding in part of the nearby estate. TRT
  • Score: 6

11:26am Fri 22 Aug 14

The Rover says...

TRT wrote:
pr76uk wrote:
Anything that improves Vicarage Road traffic flow must be a good thing. As for his objections: it's not that near the allotments, the station would inevitably mean a crossing and therefore improved safety measures at the bridge, and why put it in a different road that's not near the station? They tried this at Junction and look how well that turned out!
Obviously living in a different part of Watford. The Holywell allotment entrance IS ON the narrow section of road proposed for one way treatment. You couldn't actually get the allotments any closer to the new station than is currently without growing carrots in the drainpipes for the station roof!

There should be a station entrance at Tolpits Road. In fact, there will be one; the emergency exit for the platforms. A proper walkway wouldn't add much to the cost - WBC could have saved that money by not wasting it on pond bridges and purple flags. It would solve a lot of the traffic problems the station will create.

The detailed plans are now available from the deepest darkest depths of the TfL server, somewhere. I have a copy I downloaded a few months ago, concerned about the run-off problem, drain levels and flooding in part of the nearby estate.
Obviously living in a different part of Watford. It's Tolpits Lane, not Tolpits Road!
[quote][p][bold]TRT[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]pr76uk[/bold] wrote: Anything that improves Vicarage Road traffic flow must be a good thing. As for his objections: it's not that near the allotments, the station would inevitably mean a crossing and therefore improved safety measures at the bridge, and why put it in a different road that's not near the station? They tried this at Junction and look how well that turned out![/p][/quote]Obviously living in a different part of Watford. The Holywell allotment entrance IS ON the narrow section of road proposed for one way treatment. You couldn't actually get the allotments any closer to the new station than is currently without growing carrots in the drainpipes for the station roof! There should be a station entrance at Tolpits Road. In fact, there will be one; the emergency exit for the platforms. A proper walkway wouldn't add much to the cost - WBC could have saved that money by not wasting it on pond bridges and purple flags. It would solve a lot of the traffic problems the station will create. The detailed plans are now available from the deepest darkest depths of the TfL server, somewhere. I have a copy I downloaded a few months ago, concerned about the run-off problem, drain levels and flooding in part of the nearby estate.[/p][/quote]Obviously living in a different part of Watford. It's Tolpits Lane, not Tolpits Road! The Rover
  • Score: -2

11:34am Fri 22 Aug 14

TRT says...

The Rover wrote:
TRT wrote:
pr76uk wrote:
Anything that improves Vicarage Road traffic flow must be a good thing. As for his objections: it's not that near the allotments, the station would inevitably mean a crossing and therefore improved safety measures at the bridge, and why put it in a different road that's not near the station? They tried this at Junction and look how well that turned out!
Obviously living in a different part of Watford. The Holywell allotment entrance IS ON the narrow section of road proposed for one way treatment. You couldn't actually get the allotments any closer to the new station than is currently without growing carrots in the drainpipes for the station roof!

There should be a station entrance at Tolpits Road. In fact, there will be one; the emergency exit for the platforms. A proper walkway wouldn't add much to the cost - WBC could have saved that money by not wasting it on pond bridges and purple flags. It would solve a lot of the traffic problems the station will create.

The detailed plans are now available from the deepest darkest depths of the TfL server, somewhere. I have a copy I downloaded a few months ago, concerned about the run-off problem, drain levels and flooding in part of the nearby estate.
Obviously living in a different part of Watford. It's Tolpits Lane, not Tolpits Road!
Quite right. Must get the petard fixed. Apologies.
[quote][p][bold]The Rover[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]TRT[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]pr76uk[/bold] wrote: Anything that improves Vicarage Road traffic flow must be a good thing. As for his objections: it's not that near the allotments, the station would inevitably mean a crossing and therefore improved safety measures at the bridge, and why put it in a different road that's not near the station? They tried this at Junction and look how well that turned out![/p][/quote]Obviously living in a different part of Watford. The Holywell allotment entrance IS ON the narrow section of road proposed for one way treatment. You couldn't actually get the allotments any closer to the new station than is currently without growing carrots in the drainpipes for the station roof! There should be a station entrance at Tolpits Road. In fact, there will be one; the emergency exit for the platforms. A proper walkway wouldn't add much to the cost - WBC could have saved that money by not wasting it on pond bridges and purple flags. It would solve a lot of the traffic problems the station will create. The detailed plans are now available from the deepest darkest depths of the TfL server, somewhere. I have a copy I downloaded a few months ago, concerned about the run-off problem, drain levels and flooding in part of the nearby estate.[/p][/quote]Obviously living in a different part of Watford. It's Tolpits Lane, not Tolpits Road![/p][/quote]Quite right. Must get the petard fixed. Apologies. TRT
  • Score: 2

4:55pm Fri 22 Aug 14

P Doherty says...

This whole proposal is a joke. Firstly the station shouldnt be built here....More suitable location is Tolpits lane.
I live in the Holywell and am completely opposed to the plans.
First of all: they are are not widening the foot path that they should be. The path that runs adjacent to the allotments is very narrow and causes issues .e.g if you are pushing a pushchair and someone is walking towards you...
There are so many children using this path to get to school in the morning. For their safety they need to put up railings.

The one way is a joke. Residents in Rose Gardens would have to go all the way round to get home.... Same with parents dropping off their children to the school. This would cause lots of traffic and a danger to the kids.

The parking restrictions/enforce
ment is not necessary.... Most people who live in the area have driveways. I for one do not want to have to pay for a permit want the freedom to park on my road without a warden giving me a ticket!

I dont object If they widen the footpath, put railings up and dont put in parking restrictions!
This whole proposal is a joke. Firstly the station shouldnt be built here....More suitable location is Tolpits lane. I live in the Holywell and am completely opposed to the plans. First of all: they are are not widening the foot path that they should be. The path that runs adjacent to the allotments is very narrow and causes issues .e.g if you are pushing a pushchair and someone is walking towards you... There are so many children using this path to get to school in the morning. For their safety they need to put up railings. The one way is a joke. Residents in Rose Gardens would have to go all the way round to get home.... Same with parents dropping off their children to the school. This would cause lots of traffic and a danger to the kids. The parking restrictions/enforce ment is not necessary.... Most people who live in the area have driveways. I for one do not want to have to pay for a permit want the freedom to park on my road without a warden giving me a ticket! I dont object If they widen the footpath, put railings up and dont put in parking restrictions! P Doherty
  • Score: 4

5:18pm Fri 22 Aug 14

Keefer says...

Can you imagine all of the traffic accessing the old Holywell, Moor View, the (new) Estates, the School, Rose Gardens and Vicarage Rd itself only having one access point (Tolpits Lane) to get home in the evenings? ...and as Tolpits Lane is already grid-locked three times daily during School term time it'll be a nightmare, wit traffic backing up Vicarage & Whippendell roads. What are they thinking?
Can you imagine all of the traffic accessing the old Holywell, Moor View, the (new) Estates, the School, Rose Gardens and Vicarage Rd itself only having one access point (Tolpits Lane) to get home in the evenings? ...and as Tolpits Lane is already grid-locked three times daily during School term time it'll be a nightmare, wit traffic backing up Vicarage & Whippendell roads. What are they thinking? Keefer
  • Score: 3

5:31pm Fri 22 Aug 14

TRT says...

Keefer wrote:
Can you imagine all of the traffic accessing the old Holywell, Moor View, the (new) Estates, the School, Rose Gardens and Vicarage Rd itself only having one access point (Tolpits Lane) to get home in the evenings? ...and as Tolpits Lane is already grid-locked three times daily during School term time it'll be a nightmare, wit traffic backing up Vicarage & Whippendell roads. What are they thinking?
Well, to be fair, tube stations do work in high density housing areas without car parks.

Then again, Ascot Road / Cassiobridge will have a big car park, and the current Met station has a car park, as does the Junction. High Street doesn't have a car park to speak of - half a dozen shared use pay and display...
[quote][p][bold]Keefer[/bold] wrote: Can you imagine all of the traffic accessing the old Holywell, Moor View, the (new) Estates, the School, Rose Gardens and Vicarage Rd itself only having one access point (Tolpits Lane) to get home in the evenings? ...and as Tolpits Lane is already grid-locked three times daily during School term time it'll be a nightmare, wit traffic backing up Vicarage & Whippendell roads. What are they thinking?[/p][/quote]Well, to be fair, tube stations do work in high density housing areas without car parks. Then again, Ascot Road / Cassiobridge will have a big car park, and the current Met station has a car park, as does the Junction. High Street doesn't have a car park to speak of - half a dozen shared use pay and display... TRT
  • Score: 1

5:44pm Fri 22 Aug 14

Keefer says...

TRT wrote:
Keefer wrote:
Can you imagine all of the traffic accessing the old Holywell, Moor View, the (new) Estates, the School, Rose Gardens and Vicarage Rd itself only having one access point (Tolpits Lane) to get home in the evenings? ...and as Tolpits Lane is already grid-locked three times daily during School term time it'll be a nightmare, wit traffic backing up Vicarage & Whippendell roads. What are they thinking?
Well, to be fair, tube stations do work in high density housing areas without car parks.

Then again, Ascot Road / Cassiobridge will have a big car park, and the current Met station has a car park, as does the Junction. High Street doesn't have a car park to speak of - half a dozen shared use pay and display...
I'm not specifically worried about the Station traffic, it's that all residents in the area will have no choice but to access their homes via Tolpits Lane which is rotten for traffic at certain times of the day already, not to mention the football traffic looking for parking - it's bad enough as it is and they're proposing adding hundreds and some days thousands more vehicles and not bothering to consider the impact.

it'll be a disaster if it gets the go ahead! Residents need to wake up to what they're going to do before it's too late.

...oh, and just to peak the "green lobbies" interest, they're also proposing taking a slice of the allotments and moving the entrance further toward Scammells Way in the plans.
[quote][p][bold]TRT[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Keefer[/bold] wrote: Can you imagine all of the traffic accessing the old Holywell, Moor View, the (new) Estates, the School, Rose Gardens and Vicarage Rd itself only having one access point (Tolpits Lane) to get home in the evenings? ...and as Tolpits Lane is already grid-locked three times daily during School term time it'll be a nightmare, wit traffic backing up Vicarage & Whippendell roads. What are they thinking?[/p][/quote]Well, to be fair, tube stations do work in high density housing areas without car parks. Then again, Ascot Road / Cassiobridge will have a big car park, and the current Met station has a car park, as does the Junction. High Street doesn't have a car park to speak of - half a dozen shared use pay and display...[/p][/quote]I'm not specifically worried about the Station traffic, it's that all residents in the area will have no choice but to access their homes via Tolpits Lane which is rotten for traffic at certain times of the day already, not to mention the football traffic looking for parking - it's bad enough as it is and they're proposing adding hundreds and some days thousands more vehicles and not bothering to consider the impact. it'll be a disaster if it gets the go ahead! Residents need to wake up to what they're going to do before it's too late. ...oh, and just to peak the "green lobbies" interest, they're also proposing taking a slice of the allotments and moving the entrance further toward Scammells Way in the plans. Keefer
  • Score: 2

2:59pm Sat 6 Sep 14

WessexLad says...

What about buses from the town to the Hospital? Will they be permanently diverted via Whippendell Road, as they are on match days? This would hugely inconvenience the elderly and disabled needing access to the hospital, either as patients or as visitors.
What about buses from the town to the Hospital? Will they be permanently diverted via Whippendell Road, as they are on match days? This would hugely inconvenience the elderly and disabled needing access to the hospital, either as patients or as visitors. WessexLad
  • Score: 0

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