At the Council, July to September 2017

An aide memoire of items I’ve noted from the boroughs where I work, rest and play.

September 2017

It’s September, so the summer holidays are over, and London’s councils restart attempts to make life better for us.

Merton Council

  • Full council meets on 13 Sept. Main report focuses on Sustainable Communities, and includes a section on bike hire schemes.  The council accepts that dockless bikes (such as Obikes) are here to stay, and work is on-going with Transport for London to establish a code-of-conduct for the schemes’ operators.

Wandsworth Council

  • Communities Sub-Ctte meets on 19 Sept. In amongst the usual requests or complaints about parking zones, there’s a couple of papers related to Wandsworth’s relationship with City Hall:
    • item 7 is Wandsworth’s proposed response to the Mayor’s Transport Strategy (response in appendix).  In summary, Wandsworth thinks the MTS doesn’t do enough for outer London boroughs;
    • item 8 is Wandsworth’s proposed Local Implementation Plan (LIP) submission for 2018/19.  Appendix 1 has the 2017/18 LIP, App 2 has the proposed shifts in funding between pots in the 17/18 approved LIP, and App 3 has the proposed spend for 18/19.  From a walking and cycling perspective, the proposal isn’t much different for previous year.  Indeed, some items – such as contraflow cycle lanes in one way streets – have been in every LIP submission for several years with no actual progress ever being made.

Westminster Council

Kingston Council

City of London

  • Projects Sub-Committee meets on 7 September.
    • Item 7 is a proposal to study traffic conditions affecting the roads in & out of the Temple Inns Some residents in the area (mostly lawyers with chambers) have argued for several years that the City’s ‘ring of steel’ and, more recently, the cycle superhighways, have made it harder to drive in and out.  This proposed study seeks to establish facts and any needed improvements.
    • Item 13 is an update on the Bank Junction initiative, where all motorised vehicles except buses are excluded from Bank between 0700 and 1900. The papers largely focus on the City’s resource needs for the project: there are still more PCNs being issued than expected (although driver compliance is now 90%), there are lots of PR requests (requests for interviews), and the City officers believe more effort will be needed for traffic monitoring and analysis (the implication being that there may be legal challenges from vested interests and so the analysis needs to be watertight).  The 3rd annex has some summary stats on driver compliance (90%) and impact on bus travel times (which appear to me to be positive).
  • Streets Ctte meets on 5 September.
  • Police Committee on 21 Sept. Report from Commissioner has a section on road safety, with some interesting (even, frightening) stats.  Between April and June, 2017, of the 353 HGVs stopped for roadside checks (in partnership with other agencies), a total of 595 offences had been committed.  Of 1555 taxis and PHVs, 233 taxis and 295 PHVs (and their drivers) were breaking relevant laws.  The City Police had also ticketed 131 other drivers for 20 mph offences.

Croydon Council

London Assembly

  • Plenary of the full Assembly on 7 September. On the agenda is a motion, effectively running a tracker on mayoral ‘homework’ – things the Mayor said he’s look into but hasn’t yet reported.  The first example is the proposed scheme for Croydon’s Fiveways Junction.
  • Transport Ctte meets on 12 September. Papers include minutes of the hearings earlier in the summer on the Mayor’s Transport Strategy (MTS), ongoing work into outer London junctions, future transport (driverless cars, drones), bus safety, and new leadership at London Travelwatch.
  • Mayor’s question time is on 14 Sept. Advance questions include Caroline Russell asking why TfL hasn’t fixed the flooding on the CSH at Blackfriars, Navin Shah asks what happened to making London a “byword for cycling”, and Shaun Bailey asks a series of questions about the “unacceptable behaviour” of some London cyclists, without defining what that is.

Transport for London

 

August 2017

Quiet month as most councils suspend meetings for the summer holidays and allow the people to get on with their lives unhindered.

 

July 2017

Wandsworth

  • Full Council meeting on 12 July.
    • In the questions, Q38 references Tours Passage –path parallel to railway near York Road roundabout – about potential improvements later this year such as resurfacing and lighting. Q27 discusses the proposed bridge from Nine Elms to Pimlico (questions PDF). Q43 refers to the TfL consultation on extending bus routes on Thessally Road (on Battersea Park Road/ Nine Elms). This was proposed as one of the through-way pavement changes for cyclists in 2013, but overtaken by TfL’s Nine Elms scheme.
    • Executive report (PDF) confirms decisions on quietways from the June Communities Committee meeting
  • Some references to decisions made by council officials under delegated authority:
    • Delegated decision CS278 reports approval for a consultation with residents on improvements to the Trewint Street bridge on the River Wandle – this is part of Quietway 4.
    • Delegated decision CS276 to consult on changing the Cycle Track Order covering the path between Lyford Road and Sandgate Lane on Wandsworth Common from a seg’d path to a shared use path. Changing CTOs in Wandsworth is usually a nightmare. (June 17)
    • Delegated decision CS234 to enter a contract with Cyclehoop for on-street bike hangers (Nov 16). The first proposal for on-street hangers was back in 2013, and the first was finally installed in January 2017.  Wheels – municipal and cycle – turn slowly in Wandsworth.

Kingston-upon-Thames

London Assembly

  • Transport Ctte meets on 12 July to review Mayor’s Transport Strategy with expert witnesses (agenda)
  • Transport Ctte meets on 18 July to review MTS with senior staff from TfL (agenda)

City of London

  • Planning & Transport Committee meets 4 July. Agenda includes a proposal to prioritise the City’s engineering work programme thru to 2019 (proposal) a key reason being that the City can’t recruit and retain enough highways engineers.
  • Hampstead Heath Committee on 17 July.
    • Minutes of the previous meeting
    • Superintendent report notes at a group to look at shared use pedestrian & cycle paths to meet in Sept 2017. More detail in the Super’s report to this meeting
    • Agenda has the same attachments as last month from the Heath Constabulary regarding their work to enforce the Heath’s byelaws and fine recalcitrant cyclists for riding where they shouldn’t.
  • Hampstead Heath consultative committee as a separate meeting on 17 July. Heath vision papers (4 in all) with results from recent consultation – main report.
  • Planning & Transport Ctte on 24 July
    • Items 8c and 8d on freight consolidation. The powerpoint file has interesting stats on modal share within the square mile, particularly rate of cycling growth over the last 18 years.  (PDF copy of powerpoint presentation)
    • Item 9 has planning document on air quality for the city.

Merton

  • Cabinet meets on 3 July.  Agenda has a budget out-turn paper for 2016/17, which also re-profiles proposed spend in 2017/18, making reference to several transport schemes (long PDF budget paper).  Page 48 has the detailed table with proposed, several of which are local cycling-related schemes.
  • Full Council meets on 12 July. Papers on air quality note the NOx figures for Colliers Wood, Morden etc which exceed legal limit – all these sites are on Cycle Superhighway CS7 and other popular cycling routes.

Richmond

  • Cycle forum meets on 25 July. Papers include the results of the Teddington High Street quietway consultation.  The responses where dominated by 65+ local car drivers who are unhappy about losing 3m of parking space (the only loss in the entire scheme), and therefore are don’t want people cycling in the High Street.

Croydon

  • Cycle forum meets on 4 July. Includes discussion of Croydon’s proposed cycling strategy.

Metropolitan Police

 

 

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