New parking improvements on local roads


What does Three Rivers District Council do to help people to find car parking locally?

Three Rivers District Council acts as an agent for Hertfordshire County Council to manage the enforcement of parking controls on public roads and also to introduce some new parking controls, to create ‘controlled parking Zones and ancillary measures’. This enables the District Council to help manage parking demand in its area.

Requests for new parking controls are prioritised and addressed through the annual Parking Management work programme. This programme is overseen by the Sustainable Development, Planning and Transport Committee.

The District Council is not responsible for maintaining or managing most things that affect public roads as the Highway and Traffic Authority is Hertfordshire County Council.

These powers do not allow the District Council to introduce measures to control road safety or to improve traffic flow, which are the responsibility of the County Council. Any measures that we do introduce will support these aims but will not be primarily intended to address them. For example we would always introduce double yellow lines at junctions, which is essential for driver safety, as part of any scheme to manage parking demand.

What is a Controlled Parking Zone (CPZ)?

A Controlled Parking Zone (or CPZ) is an area where parking controls are introduced to prioritise the parking needs of residents, their visitors and local businesses. Residents and Businesses in the zone have the option to purchase permits if they want park on public roads when the CPZ is in force. Parking on all the public roads in a Zone is controlled in some way at certain times, typically using a mixture of yellow lines and parking bays.

These Zones are sometimes called residents' parking (or permit parking) schemes as they prioritise parking for local residents and their visitors.

The District Council will always try to maximise parking space on public roads when introducing a Zone, by placing bays wherever possible. Bays cannot be marked where parking would cause a risk or where parking would usually be illegal, such as on junctions.

While parking bays and yellow lines can be used outside of a CPZ, the purpose of a Zone is described in the legislation to be an area where it is not necessary to place a sign on every line for it to be enforceable. Instead, Zones are shown by entry signs, which explain what time the Zone is in force. During those hours, the parking controls apply but outside of those hours, parking is not controlled except on restrictions that apply at any time (usually double yellow lines).

Why are parking permits needed?

Some parts of the district including the centres of Chorleywood and Rickmansworth are already in controlled parking Zones. These Zones, like other parking restrictions, are shown by a mixture of signs and lines and their legal basis is the traffic orders that are created by the District or County Council.

Some drivers (such as local residents whose properties front onto a controlled street) may be eligible to buy a permit to park there.

The demand for limited street parking is managed in this way, by restricting the classes of driver eligible for a permit, but most Zones also include space where other drivers (such as visitors to shops and services) can pay for parking in public car parks or at 'pay and display' bays located near shops and local facilities.

Why does Three Rivers District Council charge a fee for parking permits and other tickets?

Local Authorities must charge for permits and pay-and-display tickets because the law requires that the enforcement of civil parking areas is self-financing and is not funded by the taxpayer. As the objective of parking controls is 100% compliance, parking enforcement cannot be financed from the issue of Penalty Charge tickets. Ideally, all drivers would park lawfully and responsibly, so there would be no need for any Penalty Charge tickets to be issued.

The role played by the District Council in managing parking demand on behalf of Hertfordshire County Council usually involves introducing new permit parking zones to prioritise parking for local residents, employees and visitors, in that order. Residents with addresses within Permit Zones are charged an annual fee for permits. This helps to support the costs of introducing Zones that are introduced to prioritise parking in their favour.

Provision is also made for parking for commuters and other road users where it is considered useful and justified by the evidence. This parking provision is usually made in the form of long-stay pay-and-display parking.

How does a Zone work and what does it look like?

Controlled Parking Zones are shown by large street signs on both sides of the road at the entrance to each Zone.

The signs will tell you:

  • What Zone you are in
  • The hours when parking is restricted
  • When waiting is not allowed on single yellow lines

You will see that:

  • The whole length of streets in the Zone are subject to parking controls (for example from 8am to 6.30pm Monday to Saturday)
  • Parking bays are marked out for the use of permit holders, pay and display parking or other parking needs (typically loading bays or taxi ranks).
  • Single yellow lines show where you cannot park during the times when the Zone is in force
  • Zones may have different operational hours when they are in force and may have different time restrictions for different parts of the Zone. 

If you have any questions please contact the District Council at