Double yellow lines agreed for dozens of Leighton Buzzard street junctions, but residents point to parking pressures

27 locations on the list to improve safety, and just one is put on hold for further investigation

Wednesday, 26th May 2021, 5:36 pm

Double yellow lines are set to be introduced at many Leighton Buzzard road junctions this summer to tackle access and safety fears - despite residents' concerns over parking pressures.

'No waiting restrictions' have been planned at 27 locations after a study of parking habits and trends in the town by Central Bedfordshire Council.

The parking blueprint for Leighton Buzzard was commissioned by the local authority and covers the residential streets surrounding the town centre.

Atterbury Avenue junction with Vandyke Road.  Photo:Google
Atterbury Avenue junction with Vandyke Road. Photo:Google

It included a manual count of all vehicles parked over a 12-hour period over two separate days, according to a report to CBC's traffic management meeting.

"The data collected has identified roads with a high demand for on-street parking," said the report.

"It has also highlighted issues, such as parking on pavements and close to junctions, unauthorised dropped kerbs, and parking in a way which could obstruct emergency service vehicles.

"The junctions identified for treatment are because parked vehicles are compromising the use of these streets for other users."

The full list of junctions included in the proposal was: Atterbury Avenue at the junction with Vandyke Road; At the mini-roundabout with Ashwell Street, Mill Road, Bassett Road and Queen Street; East Street at the junction with St Andrew’s Street and Beaudesert; East Street (access to Rushmere Park Academy and Leighton Buzzard Children’s Centre); then at the junctions of Baker Street with Doggett Street; Brooklands Drive with South Street; Bedford Street with St Andrew’s Street and Beaudesert; Cutlers Way with South Street; Doggett Street with Mill Road; George Street with Vandyke Road; Lammas Walk with Beaudesert; Millbank with Bassett Road; Pear Tree Lane with Garden Hedge; Plum Tree Lane with East Street; Steppingstone Place with South Street; Regent Street with Vandyke Road; Regent Street with Hockliffe Road; Summer Street with East Street; Summer Street with Newman Way; Woodman Close with South Street; South Street with Albany Road; Heath Road with Plantation Road; Centauri Close with Appenine Way; Marley Fields with Stanbridge Road; The Chilterns with Stanbridge Road; Cotefield Drive with Heath Road; and restrictions on Bassett Road from Millstream Way to the junction with Millbank.

Principal strategic transport officer Amanda Stopp told the meeting: "Parking close to and opposite junctions can compromise access for larger vehicles.

"Every street must be accessible to emergency vehicles at all times," she warned.

"Double yellow lines are proposed for each of these junctions."

Other measures include installing bollards at junctions, on pavements and on verges where vehicles are parked, as well as the removal of the cycle lanes on South Street to create an extra eight parking spaces, she said.

A petition with 26 signatures on the George Street restrictions at the junction with Vandyke Road and 142 other responses were received from residents.

"We've reduced the proposed extent of the waiting restrictions where possible to balance the safety requirements of keeping each junction clear and the on-street parking needs of residents," she added.

Conservative Arlesey councillor Ian Dalgarno, who chairs the meeting, said: "All of these are proposed to ensure the public are complying with the highway code.

"I hugely respect the representations made by members of the public. I'm mindful of the impact of the representations regarding Cutlers Way and South Street.

"I'm going to ask officers to reduce the length of that slightly, and not to implement the lines opposite number 50 South Street at this stage and see if that continues to be an issue.

"On Albany Road, I'm not going to implement that with the 49 representations. I'll spend more time with officers to talk about the issues around that."