One of the key benefits of the Watford Health Campus to the West Watford area will be provision of more urban green spaces for residents and visitors to the area. Included in the scheme are accessible routes for both pedestrians and cyclists alike, helping the Watford Health Campus meet its accessibility agenda as well as enhance its sustainable vision for the future.
Plans for the Watford Health Campus will provide a significant improvement for those who still wish or have to travel to the site by private vehicle. These improvements in parking provision run alongside additional provision for alternative means of accessing the site, such as public transport. Some of these new parking spaces may be provided in dedicated areas beneath the proposed hospital structure, providing direct access to the facilities and maximising the land use on the Campus site.
Working with partners Watford Borough Council, Hertfordshire County Council and other bodies such as the Highways Agency, the Watford Health Campus has been able to monitor the pattern of road and highway use within the area which has revealed the need for a new access road, allowing traffic to avoid some of the key traffic bottlenecks on the current route to the existing hospital. Aside from these plans to improve access to the site by providing a dedicated link road,extensive traffic surveys across the area have identified other potential improvements and enhancements to the network infrastructure to help alleviate traffic problems near the site and in surrounding areas. Proposals include contributions to highways improvements; re-timing and sequencing of traffic lights to improve traffic flows and ease congestion and the installation of an “intelligent” traffic light system which senses and adjusts itself to actual traffic at any hour of the day for the roundabout above M1 junction five.
Good transport and access links to the Watford Health Campus are essential to provide an economically and socially sustainable development. Additionally it is important that ambulances have access and egress from the site in two directions along high quality, wide roads -easing their passage, even when congested. With this in mind the Watford Health Campus proposes a new link road and access road, running through Wiggenhall Recreation Ground and from Wiggenhall Road to Dalton Way. This proposed road significantly differs from previous proposals for the area and the inclusion of the road in the masterplanfor the Watford Health Campus means that there is no overall loss of green space –in fact, more accessible green open space is provided after the development than exists currently!
The proposals include plans for the link road to be tree-lined, to alleviate noise and visual impact on surrounding areas. The road will also have cycle lanes to help benefit other, more sustainable methods of transport to the site.
It is expected that the link road will cut the times taken during rush hour, to access the site by vehicle and is backed by the East of England Ambulance & Paramedic Service, who recognise its critical value to their service, the development and most importantly the patients of Hertfordshire.