Agenda item

Draft Transport Strategy


The Committee were presented with the draft Transport Strategy for discussion and comment.  A presentation was provided by the Head of Planning which set out the transport infrastructure in the Borough, identifying key transport issues residents and businesses in the Borough encountered. Members comments were sought to assist the production of a transport strategy.  The presentation can be viewed via the following link: (Public Pack)Draft Transport Strategy - Key Principles - Appendix 1 Agenda Supplement for Strategic Environment Cabinet Committee, 27/03/2024 19:30 (


The Committee were invited to ask questions and make comment:


  • Members raised concern regarding pedestrian safety and whether more pedestrianisation and road crossings could be considered, along with the reduction of pavement parking.  The Head of Planning advised that the Government were looking to potentially extend the ban of pavement parking to other areas of the Country, which would cover Kent and Gravesham.  Without Government support however, local authorities would have no power to enforce.  The Chair agreed that additional powers were required from central Government.


  • Members referenced the Transport Strategy’s aspiration to improve bus services to the wider urban and rural settings of the borough.  It was highlighted how poor the current service was in some rural areas.  The Head of Planning agreed and explained that some locations were not considered as financially viable for the operators, meaning that operators chose not to invest in services in some areas.  Previously the County Council would assist the operators financially in such situations, however due to the financial position of KCC, funding was being withdrawn.  Members were informed that the Council were looking at ways to assist with this issue.  The Head of Planning proposed with the Chairs agreement, this matter could be included within the strategy.  The Chair agreed.


Committee Members highlighted that in some areas with sparce bus services, residents were opting to use cars.  It was noted that along the A227 buses ran once an hour.  The increase in cars would not alleviate pavement parking and additional car parking may need to be considered.  The Chair observed that where pavement parking bans were operational, a reliable bus service had been important.


  • Members highlighted the lack of a cycle route and footpath between Meopham Station and Istead Rise.  The Head of Planning updated that the Principal Transport and NSIP Project Manager had commissioned work alongside KCC to consider additional routes and this matter would be considered.  The Chair added that this was an important consideration, as this particular stretch of road was dangerous and therefore greatly needed.


  • The Committee observed that residents living in close proximity to schools, experienced issues with parking outside their homes.  The Chair informed Members there was an online initiative available called ‘School Streets’ which operated with cameras and those not registered to park could be fined.  He went on to say that a long-term solution was required to deal with the issue.


  • Members queried whether Gravesham had ever considered a park and ride scheme.  The Head of Planning informed the Committee that such a scheme only worked where there was traffic control and in town centres that were car park free.  The Chair added that the Council would not be looking to ban cars from the urban areas of the borough and Gravesham did not have the level of transport infrastructure to support this approach.  Instead, there was a requirement for all partners to ensure the public transport structure worked well.
  • Members noted that using the bus network within the borough for commuting to work was unreliable as it did not always operate on time. Some services currently stopped early, meaning that the return journey home was difficult.  The Head of Planning stated that there had been investment by Arriva into the Fastrack service, however this was not the case with the other services in the borough.  The new strategy would highlight this and seek to address such issues.


The Chair thanked members for their comments and requested the strategy come back to the Strategic Environment Committee in June for further consideration.


The Committee noted the report.



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