Bedford Hill, Balham (pre-consultation public engagement)
Bedford Hill between Balham Station Road and Balham High Road is to be improved, and local people are being asked for their views.
Money is available through the Wandsworth Local Fund - a charge paid by developers to fund improvements to the local area.
The council's drawn up preliminary ideas and wants to know what residents think of them. We will use your feedback to develop detailed designs prior to a formal consultation.
Comments received from local businesses, residents and ward councillors previously suggest that key areas for improvement are the condition and appearance of the footway, having less street furniture, or putting it in a better place, increased cycle parking and making the road an attractive place offering a variety of high quality goods and services to residents and visitors.
Bedford Hill from Balham High Road to the junction with Balham Station Road would be improved with new footways in high quality materials. Granite paving could be installed similar to that in Hildreth Street.
'Entry treatments' - which raise the start of the road up to the same level as the footway, would help reduce the dominance of cars and will make it easier for wheelchair users and people pushing prams. See Figure 3 (Blended crossing). Decluttering will remove any unnecessary signage and street furniture to improve the appearance of the area and to maximise space on the footway.
Depending on the location of underground utilities, it may be possible to introduce sustainable drainage and more street trees. Sustainable drainage systems (SuDS) minimise surface water run-off and include street trees and plants, increased biodiversity and adaptation to climate change.
There is the opportunity to resurface the road in a different colour through using a subtle coloured aggregate within the asphalt or an overlaid surface treatment, see figure 1. Removing the centre line also encourages drivers to be more considerate, less aggressive and drive at lower speeds.
Earlier this year a boroughwide 20mph speed limit was implemented on residential roads (excluding all A and B roads). A review of traffic speeds, volumes and accidents will be carried out in late 2018 and subject to this review it may be possible to implement a 20mph speed limit on this section of Bedford Hill (B242) if there is local support.
The council is also exploring the possibility of including a pedestrian crossing outside The Bedford public house at the junction of Bedford Hill/Balham Station Road and Fernlea Road. We are currently working closely with Transport for London to investigate the feasibility of the crossing. If it is possible and there is local support, we hope to include it as part of the Bedford Hill scheme.
It is important for the council to know the views of local residents and businesses before going ahead with any of these proposals.