Hounslow plans to ban through traffic in Devonshire Road


You may be aware of imminent plans by Hounslow Council to make changes to Devonshire Road and Turnham Green Terrace in order to help our local shops to recover from the lockdown and provide more space for pedestrians to access them while observing social distancing.  Much of the discussion on local forums has been about the shopping impact, but the proposed changes will also affect us as Glebe Estate residents by limiting vehicle access to the Estate.  This document aims to brief you on what is planned and how it will affect us.

But first, we need to understand that this is not like previous plans where there has been full consultation in advance.  In response to the current coronavirus pandemic, and recognising that urgent action needs to be taken as the lockdown gradually eases, the UK government has called on local authorities to make urgent changes to support social distancing in town centres, and to encourage people to walk and cycle where possible so as to reduce dependency on cars and public transport. (Further details at https://tinyurl.com/dft-covid )  And these changes are to be introduced as quickly as possible.  They will be initially temporary and will be reviewed after 6 months.   Consultation will take place later in the light of experience of the changes, in order to determine whether they will be made permanent.

The plans for Devonshire Road are still being finalised but are expected to include the following for the section between Chiswick High Road and Glebe Street:

  • Traffic will be allowed to enter Devonshire Road from the High Road only in order to deliver to or collect from a shop, or to visit premises (such as Capital Motors) on Prince of Wales Terrace.
  • No through traffic (except cycles) will be allowed between the High Road and the Glebe Street junction unless it is visiting premises as above.
  • Parking bays on Devonshire Road will be abolished, but loading bays will be retained, and there may be some disabled bays added.
  • The road space thus freed will be made available to pedestrians and possibly to enable shops to trade outside.
  • Vehicles that pass through the shopping area without stopping, for example to enter Glebe Street or continue southwards down Devonshire Road, will be detected by ANPR cameras and their owners will be fined.
  • Traffic will be able to leave the Glebe Estate and reach Chiswick High Road by the two existing routes, either via Duke Road or via Glebe Street, Ingress Street and Annandale Road.

 

This means that the only direct route from the High Road into the Glebe Estate will be via Duke Road.  (There are other tortuous routes via Chiswick Lane or Brackley Road, entering the estate via Fraser Street.)  We are concerned that this will lead to increased traffic in the northern section of Duke Road, and that gridlock may result at busy times due to the poor sightlines at the bends.

 

Changes are also expected to the traffic flows where Duke Road meets Chiswick High Road. The plan is that Duke Road will be exit only, and only westwards, as announced last year following the consultation on Cycleway 9.  Entry to Duke Road would be via Dukes Avenue and Bourne Place.  We think those changes will be introduced earlier than previously planned, but no details are currently available.

 

If you are concerned about these imminent changes, how can you make your voice heard?  Hounslow council are running an informal consultation currently which closes on 25 June.  This is primarily to invite suggestions for changes that will help the community to recover from the lockdown, but it also enables residents to comment on schemes like the Devonshire Road changes.  Comments can be made by clicking on a location on a map and giving your views.  You can “like” an existing comment, but we believe that a comment in your own words will be more valuable.  To have your say, go to https://haveyoursay.hounslow.gov.uk/  and click on “COVID-19 Transport Response - Hounslow's Streetspace”.  You can also send your views to Gareth James, Senior Transport Project Officer, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .  We would appreciate it if you could send a copy of your comments to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

 

If, as we expect, the Devonshire Road changes are introduced very soon on an initially temporary basis, how can we help to mitigate the traffic congestion that is liable to occur in Duke Road?  Well, firstly by creating less traffic!  In other words, walk or cycle if that’s possible, or use another route.  If congestion proves to be a real problem, there may be a need to change the parking arrangements on the northern section of Duke Road, possibly making the single yellow lines operate all day, perhaps removing one or two parking spaces.  Our aim would be to call for as few changes as necessary in order to minimise inconvenience to the residents there.

 

The new government policy of “do it now and consult afterwards” means that we do not have much influence on what Hounslow do in the immediate future, though we are in touch with our councillors and with others at Hounslow.  Please “have your say” to Hounslow, and also let us know by email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you have any particular issues that you wish GERA to act upon.

 

We all want our local shops to thrive and for us all to be able to use them in safe and convenient ways.  But we in GERA will ensure that the council are aware of the impact this will have on access to our Estate, and push for our needs to be addressed where necessary.

14 June 2020