Traffic Calming Scheme for Windsor Drive & Peel Street Car Park Management Proposals

  • A couple of highway proposals schemes for Houghton Regis will be discussed at Monday night's Planning Committee at Houghton Regis Town Council. (Agenda and Meeting Link)



WINDSOR DRIVE


Central Bedfordshire Council are proposing to introduce speed humps and a tiger crossing on Windsor Drive. A tiger crossing is one that permits pedestrians to cross as well as cyclists. The location for the crossing would be in the vicinity of where the Houghton Brook crosses Windsor Drive. 

At the moment there is a residential development in progress at The Brook on the northern side of the Houghton Brook*. The northern side of the brook on the east side of Windsor Drive has a tarmac path, as does the southern side of the brook on the west side of Windsor Drive. There have been requests over the years for traffic calming at this point from cyclists and pedestrians, notably during rush hour periods.
(* update: CBC confirmed on 30 March that the residential development mentioned in the Public Notice “relates to a housing association scheme on Sandringham Drive, where funds from the developer are being used to to add the highways improvement scheme.” This presumably refers to a long-ago development by Aldwyk Housing at Sandringham Drive)

Additionally, traffic calming road humps, 5 in number, are proposed at intervals along the length of Windsor Drive between the proposed crossing and  Sandringham Drive junction.

Video below from the Planning meeting held on 29th March 2021.




PEEL STREET

Parking at Peel Street car park has often been problematic and has been an issue challenging local councillors seeking a solution for many years. Part of the issue has been the private ownership of the car park, the need for Martin Slowe Estates (or any other owner of the Bedford Square Shopping Centre) to provide continuous parking for residential accommodations above the shops. 

The car park serves visitors to: the adjacent surgery and chemist, Houghton Regis Town Council offices, the Community Centre opposite, as well as Bedford Square shopping centre. And during construction of All Saints View it has also filled up with some constructor's vehicles, although the site management has requested them to use another car park (the former Netto store) along the  High Street, which most of them do use.

It has emerged that Central Bedfordshire Council are proposing to bring in governing rules that will restrict parking, “To provide and allocate car parking spaces in which the duration of parking will be limited to 90 minutes, with no return within 2 hours, from Monday to Friday between 8.30am and 5.30pm. Outside of those hours parking in those spaces will be unrestricted.”






Update

WINDSOR DRIVE: 25 May 2021 — The chairman of the Traffic Management Meeting, Cllr Dalgarno, said, after taking representations into consideration, he was minded to approve the tiger crossing, but not the road humps at this time. He wanted officers to take a look at the footpath widths where the crossing is going. As there was a planning application likely to be coming forward for 100 homes in the future, he asked officers to consider whether that might be the time to consider bringing in a 20mph limit.

Summary
Following the Traffic Management Meeting on 25th May where the Traffic Calming and Tiger Crossing proposals for Windsor Drive were discussed I can confirm that the decisions were made as follows;
 

That the proposal to install a Tiger Crossing be implemented as advertised at the following location in Houghton Regis:
  • Windsor Drive, at a point approximately 18 metres north west of its junction with Longbrooke.
  • The zig-zag markings on both sides of the road will extend in a southerly direction from the southern edge of the crossing for approximately 20 metres.
  • The zig-zag markings on the northbound lane of Windsor Drive will extend in a northerly direction from the northern edge of the crossing for approximately 7 metres (up to the bus cage).
  • The zig-zag markings on the southbound lane of Windsor Drive will extend in a northerly direction from the northern edge of the crossing for approximately 30 metres
 
That Officers review the design and ensure that there is enough space on the footpath at the location of the Tiger Crossing. 

That the proposal to install flat topped raised tables in Windsor Drive, Houghton Regis are not implemented. 

That Officers review whether a 20mph speed limit and traffic calming measures would be appropriate in the future due to the new housing development in this area


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