The Methleys case study is one of the first UK pilot Home Zone schemes.
Background & Objectives
The ‘Methleys Home Zone area’ contains about 300 residential properties and houses about 700 residents. The area is arranged in a compact grid pattern of 14 streets is located in Chapel Allerton in the North of Leeds city centre. Before the scheme was introduced, most of the streets were relatively wide (7 to 8.5 m), pavements narrow (1.7 - 2m wide), the area experienced significant on-street parking, through traffic by non-residential vehicles and congestion in parts, specifically during school pick up/drop off times.
To address local residents concerns, the main objectives of the home zone implementation were to:
- Reduce traffic speeds within the home zone area
- Reduce road traffic injuries of all road users and increase perceptions of safety
- Increase street based activity and neighbourhood involvement of residents, including increased opportunities for children’s play
The implementation of the Home Zone in the Methleys, began in June 2001 and was completed in November 2001 at a total cost of £222,000 (326,000 euros).
The main features of the scheme included;
- Road narrowing (to 5-6 m) and corresponding pavement area expansion
- Traffic calming measures (speed cushions)
- 20 mph speed restrictions
- A new shared road surface, incorporating coloured block paving and extensive planting
- Home Zone signing at all entry points to the zone to make non local drivers aware of the changed environment
Results and conclusions
A follow up survey of local residents showed significant improvements in terms of
- Perceived safety from traffic
- Appearance of the area
- Reduced level of air pollution
- Reduced level of traffic noise
- Reduced parking problems
And more objectively;
- Reduced mean speeds by about 6mph, resulting in mean speeds of 14mph in the zone area
- A fall of approximately 10% in the measures daily two-way traffic flows on the busiest roads within the zone
This case study (along with other UK Home Zone initiatives) demonstrates the successful transferability of Dutch ‘Woonerf’ (living yard) principles to the UK, and following the success of the scheme (and other pilot schemes) a further 61 further home zones schemes have/are to be funded as part of the UK Home Zone Challenge Initiative.
More comprehensive evaluation of the Methleys Home Zone scheme (and eight other pilot UK Home Zone schemes) is available at the Transport Research Laboratory website- http://188.8.131.52/store/report_detail.asp?srid=5441&pid=211 .