New parking spaces at St Albans station will cause "chaos" for parents dropping off children
PUBLISHED: 12:00 23 June 2018
Building work at St Albans City station has been branded "ludicrous" by parents who use the existing parking spaces to drop their children off at nursery.
Thameslink, which came under fire recently for delays and cancellations caused by timetable changes, is building a new drivers’ depot at the Ridgmont Road car park at St Albans station. The current 20-minute drop off parking spaces are also being converted to new, all-day spaces.
Becky Johnson, who drops her children off at Monkey Puzzle Day Nursery in Ridgmont Road before getting the train to work, said: “Although extra car parking spaces would normally be welcomed, where they have decided to put them is ludicrous.
“If they put the new spaces into the waiting area in front of the usual spaces it will be practically impossible to get out as there is not enough space to manoeuvre a car if anyone is in the waiting zone.
“It is going to cause absolute chaos and gridlock. I am worried about pedestrian safety (especially for children leaving nursery) as visibility will not be as good and the road is likely to be much more congested.
“It is also unclear where they expect people to park now if you are dropping people off on the Ridgmont Road side of the station.”
Ben Andersen-Tuffnell, another parent whose child attends the nursery, shared similar concerns. He said: “It is a further example of Thameslink riding roughshod over the views and needs of residents and commuters. I hope that they for once see sense and reverse their decision, which will only have negative consequences for the local community.
“I know there are many parents like me who are worried about the changes and what it means for the health and safety of their children.”
A Thameslink spokesman said: “The 20 minute parking bays were on railway land and not intended to be used by anyone other than people on railway business - mostly people picking up or dropping off passengers.
“As part of the investment designed to give St Albans commuters more trains and more seats into London, a new drivers’ depot is being built on the Ridgmont road car park.
“It is essential that we make up for the loss of paid-for spaces for commuters parking all day and so, regrettably, the changes have been made.”
The spokesman also confirmed that there are alternative 20-minute spaces available in Station Way.