Agenda and minutes

Venue: Virtually

Contact: Committee Section  Email: committee.section@gravesham.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

8.

Apologies

Minutes:

An apology for absence was received from Cllr Tony Rana who was a Ward Member invited to speak regarding the issues at Whitehill and Sun Lane. Cllr Gurdip Bungar had been invited to takes Cllr Ranas place as Ward Member.

 

9.

To sign the minutes of the previous meeting pdf icon PDF 83 KB

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting of the Board held on 08 September 2021 were signed by the Chair.

 

10.

Declarations of Interests

Minutes:

Cllr Nirmal Khabra declared an other interest as he was a local taxi driver in the Borough of Gravesham.

 

11.

Matters Arising from Previous Meetings pdf icon PDF 122 KB

Please note that all of the previous Matters Arising items from the last several Gravesham Joint Transport meetings have now been answered. The next Matters Arising document will only contain Matters from this meeting if there are no further queries.

 

 

 

Minutes:

Minute 173. Reports from Officers 173.1 Bath Street - Fastrack Infrastructure Scheme

 

The Dartford & Gravesham District Manager (KCC) confirmed to the Board that Graham Killick was due to attend the next meeting of Gravesham JTB; the Dartford & Gravesham District Manager (KCC) agreed to confirm it with Graham Killick outside of the meeting and inform the Chair.

 

12.

Reports from Officers

12a

Clive Road Bus Gate - Information Only Letter pdf icon PDF 96 KB

Minutes:

The Board were presented with a letter from KCC explaining that a decision had been made to prohibit taxis using the Clive Road exit at Barrack Row as the shortcut for taxis would risk potentially creating queues within Barrack Row and causing congestion within the Gravesend Bus Hub. Thus, negatively impacting buses as well as fellow taxis that had fairly queued for a fare on the New Road rank.

 

The Board raised a number of concerns regarding the decision and County Cllr Sullivan asked that a letter be sent to KCC from the Board requesting a pilot scheme to be created whereby taxis could use the Clive Road exit during the pilot scheme. At the end of the pilot scheme the results would be reviewed to see if there was a noticeable impact on bus travel times and if there wasn’t there should be a review to allow taxi vehicles to use the exit. 

 

The Chair agreed that a letter be sent to KCC.

 

In relation to the recent carried out at Barrack Row, County Cllr Ridgers asked for an update on the closure of Ashboy Road, when it would reopen and would it reopen as a two or one way road for vehicles.

 

The Dartford & Gravesham District Manager (KCC) had not seen any proposed traffic order or road plan changes for Ashboy Road and assumed it would return to normal use once it reopened. The Dartford & Gravesham District Manager (KCC) agreed to speak to Graham Killick, who was the Project Manager for the Scheme, and report back to the Board.

 

13.

Issues raised by Councillors with the approval of the Chair

13a

Springhead Road - Parking Issue - Raised by Cllr Scollard

The Police advised they have no powers to remove the below vehicle; Cllr Scollard asked if a letter could be created advising the owner about blocking the footpath for mums with prams and wheelchair users.

 

 

The below written response was received from the Parking & Environmental Enforcement Services Manager (GBC):

 

‘Thank you for the emails and the photographs, showing the parking issues being caused by the van overhanging the driveway onto the footway.

 

Gravesham Borough Council takes parking contraventions very seriously, and where possible will take action. However, our Civil Enforcement Officers can only take enforcement action on vehicles that are parked on footways if there are double or single yellow lines on the road adjacent to where the vehicle is parked as these restrictions restrict parking from the centre of the carriageway to the edge of the public footway or verge. Without a restriction, our officers are unable to enforce.

 

That being said, we have had similar issues in other roads in Gravesham and in these instances we have posted a warning letter through the door, which is a joint statement from KCC Highways and GBC, so I will arrange for a letter to be posted to the property this week.

 

If a vehicle is causing an obstruction (where a parking restriction is not in place) then this enforcement power remains with the Police under the offence of ‘unnecessary obstruction on the Highway’, however I note that in this instance the Police do not feel that the vehicle is causing an obstruction.  

 

The Department for Transport have been working with the British Parking Associations and local authorities to find a viable solution to footway parking.  DfT recently carried out a review and proposed possible solutions, however due to the complexities there has not been any outcome or legislative changes from the review as yet – more information on the review, history of pavement parking and possible solutions can be found on the Direct.Gov website, which may be of interest - https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/managing-pavement-parking/pavement-parking-options-for-change

 

I note on the photographs that it looks like this property does not have the required dropped kerb so the vehicle must be bumping up the kerb, this may be something that KCC Highways may be able to advise on and whether any action can be taken.’

 

Minutes:

The Chair advised that he already received a response and asked the Parking Services & Enforcement Manager to update the Board.

 

The Parking Services & Enforcement Manager explained that a Civil Enforcement Officer (CEO) attended, and letters were sent out last week to a number of houses along Springhead Road that had vehicles parked in a similar behaviour to the picture attached to agenda. The letters issued warnings to the homeowners to not cause an obstruction to the pavement with their vehicles.

 

13b

Springhead Road - Overgrown Hedges - Raised by Cllr Scollard

Kevin Gore, Nick May and Cllr Scollard visited the area and they looked at some of the overgrown hedges which made the paths to narrow to pass with parked vehicles and a discussion had regarding painting a boundary line for off road parking not to cross.

 

Cllr Scollard requested an update.

 

The below written response was received from the Parking & Environmental Enforcement Services Manager (GBC):

 

With regards to the vegetation overhanging the property boundaries and in turn making the footways narrower, this again would be for KCC to advise on.’

 

Minutes:

The Chair visited the area with the Dartford & Gravesham District Manager (KCC) and the Parking Services & Enforcement Manager and noted the issues with the overgrown vegetation, parked vehicles on the pavement and access to pedestrians.

 

The Dartford & Gravesham District Manager (KCC) advised that the ground in the area was not made of concrete, and it was not built to take the weight of traffic which could cause further issues if a boundary line for off road parking was painted. The Dartford & Gravesham District Manager (KCC) suggested a petition be created which let the residents decide what would be the best option for the road such as painting yellow lines which would decrease parking on the pavement but would have a knock on effect of decreasing the overall spaces for parking on the road. 

 

The Board shared their own experiences with complaints received from residents about parking on the pavement and sought further clarification on the responsibilities of the Police when a vehicle was parked on the pavement.

 

The Dartford & Gravesham District Manager (KCC) and the Parking Services & Enforcement Manager explained that:

 

  • Kent Police enforced obstructions on the highway under the Road Traffic Act; if there were no yellow lines in the road but a vehicle caused an obstruction on the highway then that would be enforceable by Kent Police, but it was not an urgent matter for them. They determined enforcement on a case by case basis, and they often conducted a test to see if a pram/wheelchair could get past a wall and a vehicle parked on the pavement and if they couldn’t then the vehicle would receive a fine
  • Driving on the footway was also considered illegal and enforceable by Kent Police
  • KCC were able to fine cars that had legally parked on the pavement but had caused damage or obstruction to the footway if the footway was not designed for traffic use. KCC had enforced 286 cases in Gravesham over the last three years where damage to the footway had been caused by a vehicle
  • GBC’s Civil Enforcement Officers can only take action with vehicles parked on the footway when they are parked adjacent to a single of double yellow line, this is because the yellow lines cover the centre of the carriageway to the boundary of the property so cover footways.  If there are no yellow lines footway parking is a Police responsibility under the offence of ‘unnecessary obstruction’.

 

The Parking Services & Enforcement Manager updated the Board on a recent consultation on parking on the pavement outside of London by the Department for Transport:

 

  • The consultation found three possible solutions to footway parking outside of London; within London all parking on the footway was banned unless a London authority had put forward a certain area in which footway parking was allowed following evidence of the need
  • The first solution was a legislative change to introduce a London-style pavement parking prohibition throughout England 
  • The second solution was amending the local authorities Traffic Regulation Order (TRO) to include  ...  view the full minutes text for item 13b

14.

Any Other Business which by reason of special circumstances the Chair is of the opinion should be considered as a matter of urgency. pdf icon PDF 1 MB

Minutes:

Old Road East Speeding Vehicles - Request from Cllr Tony Rana

 

The Dartford & Gravesham District Manager (KCC) advised that he had received an email update from the Schemes & Planning Project Manager who was unsure why the item had been requested at JTB as officers hadn’t had a chance to look into the issues at Old Road East yet. The Schemes & Planning Project Manager agreed to look into all the spread data for the area and arrange for an ATC to be placed in the area if there was no data currently held. An update would be brought back to the next JTB meeting.

 

Whitehill/Sun Lane Requested Changes from a Previous JTB Meeting - Request from Cllr Tony Rana

 

The Chair allowed Cllr Bungar to address the Board; Cllr Bungar voiced his concerns for the road layout and laid out the measures that himself and Cllr Rana wanted implemented. The Chair echoed Cllr Bungars concerns around traffic in the area and the danger motorists caused to pedestrians/school children when they drove on the pavement to get round traffic.

 

The Dartford & Gravesham District Manager (KCC) explained that following the previous JTB meeting, he attended the site with Cllr Rana and Claire Venner. Claire Venner arranged for a number of surveys to be undertaken and Cllr Rana was informed of the civil engineering solutions. Unfortunately, Claire Venner left KCC shortly after and all of the survey’s requests were transferred over to another officer who would provide an update to Cllr Rana once he had investigated the issues and received the results of the surveys.

 

The Dartford & Gravesham District Manager (KCC) advised that the new officer would attend future meetings or his manager, Paul Leary, would.

 

Following further concerns raised by Cllr Bungar, the Chair reminded Members that JTB was an advisory board only and Members could raise individual issues/requests with the Dartford & Gravesham District Manager (KCC) outside of the meeting at any time.

 

The Dartford & Gravesham District Manager (KCC) explained that Whitehill Road was a classified road and all driveways needed planning permission from the Council; a joint task could be undertaken with KCC and the Council to try and remove some of the parked vehicles off Whitehill Road which would alleviate some of the issues.

 

The Parking Services & Enforcement Manager agreed to liaise with the Dartford & Gravesham District Manager (KCC) and the Planning Team on the matter.

 

In response to the request of making Whitehill Road one way, the Dartford & Gravesham District Manager (KCC) explained that although KCC Members often use some of their funding to pay for ATCs that were place din the area, making roads one way was length process. An unintended consequence of making a road one way could be increasing traffic in nearby areas and making other areas unsafe so a thorough investigation would need to be completed before any one way change were considered. Following the investigation, an update would be given to Cllr Rana.

 

Double Yellow Lines and Request for a review of Parking on  ...  view the full minutes text for item 14.