I am writing to express my serious concern regarding Wades Hill Roundabout, Winchmore Hill N21.
The roundabout has always been notoriously damaged due to HGV’s using the route to get to destinations.
With this in mind HGV’s use the roundabout as a cut through.
In the process the roundabout has been damaged, mainly the grass verge on the inner part of the roundabout has been made into a sludge and the ground lifted meaning only plowed soil remins. Also the bollards on the outer part of the roundabout remain damaged and sometimes removed entirely as the swing of HGV’s make the roundabout narrow.
Also the pavement in some parts is cracked again due to HGV’s.
I would like to invite the council to explore new possibilities for the roundabout:
- Maybe even restricting HGV’s from the junction entirely,
- Revamping the roundabout and making smaller in size to allow HGV’s passage
- Making grass verge concrete to allow area to be maintained.
Thoughts? I have CCd ward councillors for transparency
Dear Cllr Ioannou,
Sorry for the delayed reply with this enquiry. It has been through several teams and only came to me late last week to do the response.
The history surrounding the recent works is that several lengths of kerbs were frequently knocked out by HGV/buses negotiating this roundabout and this was due to two main issues. The first was that a sewer manhole was positioned in the middle of the kerb line and as such, created a gap in the circle of kerbs. The second issue was the historic granite kerbs have very little depth to them and can easily be flipped out if caught by HGV vehicles. This can be seen in the attached photo 20190801_135414.
We studied vehicle movements on this roundabout and it appeared that large vehicles found it tight to negotiate and occasionally clipped the roundabout kerbs. There was also evidence that some vehicles had overrun the surrounding footpaths on a couple of the corners.
We felt that by reducing the size of the roundabout by 1m diameter, would give the vehicles an additional 0.5m carriageway all around the roundabout and also reduce the potential to overrun the footpath. This we would also protect with the provision of some bollards.
As you can see in the attached photo WP_20200403_09_03_20, the size of the roundabout has been substantially reduced.
The recent damage is obviously due to bad driving and we have also had reports of delivery vans going round the roundabout the wrong way by residents. The danger is, if we make this roundabout any smaller then vehicle speeds will increase because there will be no deflection to slow down traffic. This could result in more speed related accidents.
I have had our Traffic Engineers check what vehicles can use this roundabout using a computer programme called Autotrack. Using both the old and new kerb layout it has been proved that all large vehicles can negotiate this roundabout except articulated lorries.
As vehicle damage of the recent type never occurred to this roundabout prior to the recent works and that the roundabout is now wider, I can only ascertain that an articulated lorry has used this route that never used it before.
The dilemma now is, do we make this roundabout even smaller so to accommodate articulated lorries, which will cost around £12,000 and potentially increase the speed of other vehicles, or do we leave it as it is to discourage vehicles of this size using such small residential streets.
I have spoken to our Highway Inspector for this area and we are going to experiment with the position of the bollards that have been damaged. If this occurs again, we are going to reinstate them 200mm further back from the kerb line. This should allow a greater overhang of the footpath. If they still get damaged then we will not replace them for the time being and this will probably be followed by articulated lorries overrunning the footpath.
I will arrange for a video survey to be carried out in the new financial year to study the vehicle movements on this roundabout. We will then be in a better position to actually see who is using this roundabout and if damage occurs again, who is causing it. We will then be able to decide on a further plan of action.