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Junction of Watling Place / St Michaels Avenue

Reported via desktop in the Kerbs category anonymously at 13:47, Tuesday 1 March 2022

Sent to Central Bedfordshire Council less than a minute later. Council ref: 368364.

This issue has been getting progressively worse over time and as yet, nothing has been done. The parking at the top of Watling Place at the junction with St Michaels Avenue has become so crowded and dangerous that residents of St Michaels Avenue are now parking their cars up on the pavements, kerbs and grass verges which have now been ruined as can be seen in the attached photos to this report.

These photos do not even show the worst parts of the parking situation as people are also parking on the pavements of the junction which is making it dangerous for pedestrians, people with prams or wheelchair users to navigate the pavement safely, plus it has become unbelievably dangerous for road users either trying to pull out or into Watling Place as you cannot see what is coming down the road and if it is safe to pull out or not given the speeds that some drivers travel down the road. This parking is also contrary to the Highway Code which states rule 243: "Rule 243 of the Highway Code states you must not park opposite or within 10 metres (32 feet) of a junction, except in an authorised parking space"

This problem is made exponentially worse during the school drop off and pick up times as the road becomes gridlocked with nowhere to go for vehicles or way to safely navigate.

Many of the residents of Watling Place have signed an open letter to our local MP suggesting the installation of wooden bollards on the grass verges within Watling Place to prevent them being parked on including the junction of Watling Place itself which leads to Roman Gardens, but we feel more needs to be done regarding the parking and the issues it is causing both to the verges (which are often maintained by residents in between council grass cutting) and the safety of bother pedestrians and road users.

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  • Thank you for contacting us with information relating to a Highways issue. Central Bedfordshire Council is in the process of implementing area-wide verge parking controls. An engineer will inspect and assess the site. If appropriate your request will then be passed to our Traffic Management Team for further consideration. Please contact us 0300 300 8049 if you would like more information on the progress of this report.

    Posted by Central Bedfordshire Council at 14:27, Tuesday 1 March 2022

  • Verge and pavement parking is a difficult issue for us to tackle. There’s not always a simple solution as the demand for on street parking across Central Bedfordshire far outweighs our available road and boundary space. Our enforcement team do not have powers in this situation without restrictions in place. Reacting to an issue such as this in one area (in the form of delivering a scheme of restrictions or prevention measures) has the potential to push this issue on to other roads, or indeed create another safety issue entirely, so we have to take a holistic approach to these requests that doesn’t always result in immediate action against our other safety priorities.

    The government are in the process of reviewing legislation relating to Pavement Parking, and Central Bedfordshire Council’s own parking strategy will be reviewed accordingly based on any outcomes of this. It is also hoped in the long term there will be a reduction in car dependency, but in the immediate term car ownership is unlikely to significantly reduce, and as a result this will continue to be a difficult issue for us to tackle for the time being.

    Attempts have been made previously to educate vehicle owners of the potential maintenance and safety issues caused by this type of parking, in the form of letter drops on to vehicles caught in the act. Unfortunately these have largely been ignored, and in some cases have ended up inflaming neighbourly disputes where residents suspect the person who may have brought this forward to our attention.

    We note your concerns at this time and will monitor if a situation in need of immediate attention occurs. It will however be more likely that rectifying this will be something we’re reliant on changes to legislation and strategy to support with.

    State changed to: No further action

    Posted by Central Bedfordshire Council at 11:33, Thursday 3 March 2022

This report is now closed to updates. You can make a new report in the same location.