Agenda and minutes
Venue: Civic Centre, Gravesend, Kent
Contact: Committee Section Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Apologies for absence were received from County Cllr Conrad Broadley (Vice-Chair), County Cllr Bryan Sweetland, the District Manager – Gravesham (KCC) and the Schemes Project Manager (KCC).
Cllr Hills pointed out a typo on page six of the minutes; it was 154 Lower Higham Road not 134 Lower Higham Road.
The minutes of the meeting of the Board held on Wednesday, 10 March 2021 were signed by the Chair.
To declare any interests members may have in the items contained on this agenda. When declaring an interest members should state what their interest is.
Cllr Nirmal Khabra declared an other interest as he was a local taxi driver in the Borough of Gravesham.
As no KCC officers were in attendance, Cllr Sullivan asked that all of the Matters Arising queries from this meeting be carried over to the next meeting in case any further discussion was required with KCC officers.
The Chair agreed and asked the Committee Services Officer to action the request.
Minute 174 (b) – Issues regarding Lower Higham Road, Chalk Road, Havisham Road and Orlick Road– Cllr Leslie Hills
Cllr Hills requested an update for when the ‘Keep Clear’ road marking would be placed outside 154 Lower Higham Road as the disabled resident in that premises was still having to put up with vehicles parked at the bottom of his properties steps. Cllr Hills advised that the District Manager – Gravesham (KCC) had previously said KCC were waiting for better weather, but Cllr Hills requested a date that he could feed back to his constituent.
The Chair agreed that the matter would be raised with the District Manager – Gravesham (KCC) and the Schemes Project Manager (KCC).
Cllr Hills advised that the potholes in Chalk were continually breaking apart and being filled back in; Cllr Hills felt that the potholes should not need repairing so often and should be made to last.
Cllr Hills had previously requested yellow line for the junctions on Havisham Road/Chalk Road and Orlick Road/Lower Higham Road, but they still had not been installed. Cllr Hills was informed there had been a site visit but was disappointed to hear that as there had not been a serious accident in the aforementioned roads in the last five years, the yellow lines could not be installed.
Cllr Hills advised that residents were still having problem with the amount of RS Skips vehicles driving through Lower Higham Road; Cllr Hills added that those skip lorries combined with upcoming works for the Nuralite Site, the Lower Thames Crossing and all of the drilling would greatly impact the residents of Chalk.
Cllr Hills recently held a meeting with KCC, Higham Parish Council, Ward Cllrs and a Kent Highways Officer to discuss RS Skips travel routes; the KCC Highways Officer agreed to report back to the group after his meeting with the Highways Agency and Kent Police. Once the findings were reported back, Cllr Hills would seek a meeting with RS Skips, it was his understanding that currently they were allowed 74 visits a day through Chalk and they adhered to a 30mph limit through the village, but it seemed too fast for Lower Higham Road.
The Chair understood Cllr Hills frustration and acknowledged that meetings were already in hand with Cllr Hills and KCC.
Cllr Hills asked that his concerns be minuted regarding the drainage outside 203 Lower Higham Road as there was a build-up of water there which had caused the grass area to turn into thick mud and residents were worried it would freeze in the winter. The Schemes Project Manager (KCC) had assured Cllr Hills that it was on the work schedule and was due to be ... view the full minutes text for item 4.
Improving Walking and Cycling in Gravesham
Email from Dartford and Gravesham Cycling Forum in:
The Chair welcomed Andrew Patrick, Alex Hills and Gary Outram, representatives from the Dartford & Gravesham Cycling Forum, to the Board meeting.
Andrew Patrick, Alex Hills and Gary Outram gave an oral presentation to the Committee and outlined key points regarding:
· The benefits of cycling and walking as a means of transport within Gravesham
· The Prime Ministers announcement around improving cycling in the country and the pot of £3 billion in the Active Travel Fund that was available to all local authorities to bid for in order to improve the cycling/walking infrastructure in the Borough
· The multiple documents that were readily available to local authorities such as LTN 120, Gear Change, the Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy, Air Quality Policy, and the Planning Policy Framework for Sustainable Transport. Many of those which would be essential for local authorities to follow when they wanted to bid for the Active Travel Fund. Local authorities that followed the guidance within the technical LTN 120 document would be the most likely to have successful bids. Having a plan in place to improve cycling/walking infrastructure to meet the needs of people conducting everyday journeys would be in line with Government Policy and would improve Gravesham’s bid significantly
· The LTN 120 document would vastly help with the cycle infrastructure design and the Local, Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plans (LC WHIP) would provide key technical guidance for local authorities to follow
· The six key stages within the LC WHIP were Determining Scope – Stage 1, Gathering Information – Stage 2, Network Planning for Cycling – Stage 3, Network Planning for Walking – Stage 4, Prioritizing Improvements – Stage 5
· All of the key documents could be found on the Government’s website and expanded further on all technical guidance
· The decline in transport services for rural areas was also a form of exclusion as many people who don’t drive were excluded from applying for jobs that were further away as they had no means of getting there form a rural area. Improved cycling/waking infrastructure would allow those people to take upcycling/walking as a form of commuting
· There were several types of measures which could be implemented to improve cycling infrastructure such as the installation of 20 mph speed limit areas in residential or retail areas in order to make cyclists and walkers feel safer. There were other forms of mitigation such as slow traffic area and removing the barriers that currently existed for cyclist/walkers; any new cycling/walking infrastructure that was installed needed to be completely inclusive so that anyone could use it
· Cycling had been proven to improve both physical and mental health being, and cycling helped to connect local communities together
· Gravesham’s Local Plan recognised that cycling and walking were essential modes of transport and should be considered as the preferred first choice of transport for people making short journeys
Cllr Hills raised concern over the implementation of 20mph areas as the Council wanted to become carbon neutral by 2030 and the slower speed areas meant increased carbon ... view the full minutes text for item 5.
For Information Reports
The Committee were presented with an update report from KCC Highways on the Transportation and Safety Schemes and the Combined Member Grant Programme.
County Cllr Sullivan suggested that when the KCC officers could not attend the Board meeting, a more senior officer such as Simon Jones should be invited to attend.
Members noted the report
Any Other Business which by reason of special circumstances the Chair is of the opinion should be considered as a matter of urgency.
County Cllr Ridgers raised the issue of E-Scooters within the Borough and its links to county line gangs.
County Cllr Ridgers as advised that the issue fell under the remit of the Crime & Disorder Security Committee and he was encouraged to read the minutes of the previous Crime & Disorder Scrutiny Committee meeting as the Police brought a report to the meeting on the issue and outlined their plans to deal with E-Scooters.
County Cllr Meade advised that the Police & Crime Commissioner recently published a useful article on E-Scooters and agreed to circulate it to Members of the Board.