Businesses, visitors and local residents are set to benefit from major public realm improvements to Clarendon Road, including upgraded streetscapes and more open spaces...
Work has started on the third phase of the £9.28m regeneration of Clarendon Road, which will transform the traffic-dominated thoroughfare into a greener, more open space that gives cars, bikes and pedestrians equal priority.
Funded by Hertfordshire County Council, Hertfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and Watford Borough Council, the project will see the widening of pavements and narrowing of the road to create a safe, pedestrian-friendly environment which supports cycling, walking and public amenity.
As a key part of the project, Watford Borough Council will be assessing the private frontages of properties and the potential to integrate office forecourts into the streetscape.
Other initiatives will include the installation of:
- Green spaces with trees and planting
- Seating areas
- Rain gardens
- Improved lighting
- Public artwork
Street designers have also been working with Disability Watford to integrate features to improve disability access, including better lighting, more appropriate kerbing and more contrasting surfaces.
Elected Mayor Peter Taylor said, “Clarendon Road is a key gateway into the town centre from Watford Junction, the busiest train station in Hertfordshire and used by 9 million people every year. It is also a key business hub where global companies are based. It’s important that we create a great first impression of our town that encourages people to come in and experience the many things Watford town centre has to offer. It’s also crucial that we create a better environment for the many workers based along this road and for nearby residents. These improvements will mean that we will continue to attract top class businesses to Watford.”
Adam Wood, Head of Infrastructure & Regeneration at Hertfordshire LEP, said, “Watford has seen strong growth over the past three years and our £4.8m Local Growth Fund investment towards the regeneration of Clarendon Road, the gateway to Watford town, will help it fully live up to its growth potential. The transformation to date has been remarkable and has brought new vitality to the town centre. We look forward to seeing this third phase of development come to life.”
Although wide, the majority of Clarendon Road is already a single lane roadway. The narrowing of the road will not adversely affect traffic flow but vehicles will be required to reduce their speed to 20mph, which will increase road safety for pedestrians. Cyclists will be in line with traffic flow and therefore have equal priority as vehicles.
The work is being carried out by contractor Murrill Construction Ltd. and the project will be completed by the end of 2023.