We received a large number of requests every year to introduce a CPZ.
The list of requests is prioritised every year in consultation with the councillor who has responsibility for environment and transport issues. There are three priorities.
- Priority one: Cases where there are urgent access issues, such as emergency services or other vehicles are unable to enter a road. These are fairly straightforward and very limited consultation is required. These are very unlikely to be opposed during formal and informal consultation stages.
- Priority two: These are cases where residents are competing with commuters/local workers for limited road space. Comprehensive consultations / discussions with local councillors / residents and / or businesses is required.
- Priority three: These are non-urgent cases where alternative on-street parking is available elsewhere within street, or there is an existing CPZ, or the issue(s) to be resolved is not considered to be in need of urgent attention.
Any request to introduce a CPZ will require an initial investigation, followed by statutory procedures if a scheme is possible.
Once work is prioritised, informal consultations are carried out to seek the views of residents. If the majority of people who respond feel that there is a problem, a scheme is designed and further consultation is carried out with ward councillors, residents, police and the highway authority. Appropriate amendments are made to the proposed scheme according to the comments received.
Once a scheme is agreed by at least 60% of residents who reply to the consultation, formal legal consultation is carried out in the form of advertising in local newspapers and inviting comments / objections from any resident/stakeholder. This includes Hertfordshire Constabulary, Freight Transport Association Ltd and Road Haulage Association.
After the legal process / consultations, a legal document called a Traffic Regulation Order will be made, sealed and signed. A scheme will be implemented, with signs and road markings introduced soon after.
The councillor who is the Environment and Transport Portfolio Holder will work with officers to consider any objections and will decide:
- whether to overrule them, in which case the proposals will be implemented in full, or;
- Whether to accept them, in which case the scheme will be amended or abandoned.
Further consultation is only required on the amendments if they are more (rather than less) restrictive than the original scheme.
Straightforward priority one requests typically take four to five months from initial consultation through to any introduction of signage and road markings.
Priority two and three requests will invariably take longer and may not always go ahead, particularly if there is no consensus from other people living in the area which would be affected.