Welwyn Garden City town centre regeneration plans to be trialled this month

PUBLISHED: 08:00 14 May 2018

A visual mock-up of what Stonehills could look like after the changes.

A visual mock-up of what Stonehills could look like after the changes.

Archant

Welwyn Garden City town centre regeneration plans – including the introduction of a 20mph speed limit – are set to be trialled later this month.

The councils' town centre regeneration plan will be trialled between May 21 and June 17. Picture: Welwyn Hatfield Council and Hertfordshire County Council. The councils' town centre regeneration plan will be trialled between May 21 and June 17. Picture: Welwyn Hatfield Council and Hertfordshire County Council.

Following a public consultation last year, elements of the £1.5million proposals will be put to the test between May 21 and June 17.

Among them is banning all traffic from the northern part of Stonehills, with the southern section only being open to taxis and small loading vehicles.

The connection between Wigmores North and Howardsgate will be one-way, as will the southbound stretch between Church Road and Fretherne Road, and six pedestrian crossing points will be installed around Howardsgate – around which parking will be suspended.

The project, developed by Herts County Council in partnership with the borough council, will also see Parkway narrowed to one lane near Howardsgate.

HCC’s cabinet member for highways, Cllr Ralph Sangster, said: “Our initial proposals were well-received and we’re hoping this next stage will give people the opportunity to gain a real sense of the impact the improvements could have.

“The aim is to make the town centre a more pleasant environment for all, ensuring we reduce traffic circulation, improve the shopping experience and enhance pedestrian and cycle safety.”

Council chiefs believe the current traffic system encourages motorists to do “laps” when looking to park, which clogs up roads and hinders the shopping experience.

Borough councillor Mandy Perkins said: “We hope the trial will help people see the benefits of the changes being put forward, but it’s really crucial everyone responds to let HCC know what they think.”

As part of the scheme, letters will be sent to town centre residents and businesses, and consultation events will take place in Stonehills on Saturday, May 26, between 10am and 2pm, and on Monday, June 11, between 3pm and 7pm.

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