MAIDSTONE BOROUGH COUNCIL
Maidstone Joint Transportation Board
Minutes of the meeting held on Wednesday 4 November 2015
Councillor Burton (Chairman), and
Councillors Ash, Bird, Carter, Chittenden, Clark, Cooke, Cuming, English, Fort, Hotson, T Sams, Vizzard, Mrs Whittle, Willis and J.A. Wilson
Councillors Balfour, Grigg, and Sargeant
112. Apologies for Absence
It was noted that apologies for absence were received from Councillors Brown and Daley.
113. Notification of Substitute Members
There were no substitute members.
114. Notification of Visiting Members
The following members were in attendance as observers and reserved the right to speak on any item on the agenda:
115. Disclosures by Members and Officers
There were no disclosures by members or officers.
116. Disclosures of lobbying
It was noted that all members of the Board had been lobbied on item 10,
Report of KCC Head of Transportation - Results of the VISUM
117. To consider whether any items should be taken in private because of the possible disclosure of exempt information.
RESOLVED: That all items be taken in public as proposed
118. Minutes of the meeting held on 14 October 2015.
Members of the Board had stated their support or raised concerns about items on the agenda of the previous meeting. The Chairman agreed that on this occasion these points would be noted but that minutes were a summary of the meeting with recommendations and not a verbatim record. The statements noted by the Board were as follows:
· Councillor Chittenden – Report of Parking Services Manager – Objections to Traffic Regulation Orders – Councillor Chittenden requested that Maidstone Borough Council and Kent County Council work together urgently to resolve the flooding and cleaning problems that exist along The Mallows.
· Councillor Hotson in relation to the REPORT OF KCC, PROW AND ACCESS SERVICE – Loose Greenway Scheme had no objection in principle to the scheme although he was aware of objections made by Loose residents.
· Councillor Bird in relation to the Report of KCC, PROW and ACCESS SERVICE – River Medway Towpath welcomed the scheme but expressed concern about encouraging the use of the towpath by cyclists in the winter months when obstacles may not be readily visible. He asked KCC officers whether consideration had been given to low level lighting and requested that a safety assessment be undertaken.
· Councillor Clarke in relation to the Report of KCC Head of Transportation – progress Report on Technical Work for the Integrated Transport Strategy expressed concern about the proposal to close Cranborne Avenue to exiting traffic and questioned whether Plains Avenue would be a suitable alternative exit, having worked on current problems of joining the A229 in peak times there (using his devolved budget to create a yellow box junction).
It was highlighted that the start time of the meeting had been minuted incorrectly as 6.30pm rather than 5.00pm.
NOTE: Councillor Whittle joined the meeting at 5.11pm.
RESOLVED: That the minutes of the meeting held on 14 October 2015 be approved as a correct record and signed subject to the following amendment: That the start time of the meeting be amended to 5.00pm.
119. Petitions (if any)
There were no petitions.
120. Questions/Statements by members of the public
There were no questions.
121. Report of KCC Head of Transportation - Results of VISUM Transport Modelling
The Chairman agreed to receive an urgent update to the Report of KCC Head of Transportation – Results of VISUM Transport Modelling.
Brendon Wright, Strategic Transport and Development Planner introduced the report which summarised the results of the additional DS4 modelling scenario. The VISUM modelling work, undertaken by AMEY had tested a series of scenarios relating to the transport interventions that could be implemented alongside future housing and employment development. Each of these scenarios had been predicated on an individual set of assumptions regarding the package of transport interventions.
The Board received a presentation from Steve Whittikar, Principal Transport Planner (AMEY), which set out the forecast scenarios for the DS4a and DS4b which was the option created by the Board at its July meeting with and without a Leeds Langley Relief Road (LLRR).
During the course of the discussion the following points were made:
· The modelling results for DS4 (Do Something option 4) were presented as a comparison to DM option (Do Minimum transport modelling whereby only the Bridge Gyratory Scheme is implemented).
· The modelling did not reflect individual journey times; it looked at the network as a whole rather than sections of the network.
· It was confirmed that the VISUM modelling could be used as a tool for localised modelling but at present it was focused on the urban area at the busiest periods for travel in the am and pm.
· The LLRR was estimated to offer approximately 25% improvement to travel time.
· The impact of increased parking costs and bus frequencies was estimated to offer approximately 40% improvement to travel time.
· It was questioned whether the estimated impact of increased parking costs and bus frequencies was achievable; was there a commercial appetite from bus companies to deliver this?
· The impact on the A229 and A274 was considered but the Board also questioned whether detailed examination had taken place for other traffic ‘pinch points’ in the borough.
· The Board considered the phasing of new development over the emerging Local Plan period which ended 2031, and the way in which traffic mitigation would need to be delivered in line with this.
· The Board considered the application of constraint when considering a planning application for new development where impact on traffic and transport was deemed to be severe. MBC consulted with the highways authority on planning applications but until now KCC had been unable to object on the grounds of severity as it was unable to provide evidence that demonstrated this. In terms of planning guidance what constituted ‘severity’ was open to interpretation and had yet to be challenged. It was felt that the VISUM modelling undertaken could provide the evidence base required by the highways authority.
The Board agreed that a further, more detailed report was required on the proposed transport mitigation scenarios presented.
1. That the Board’s support be given to KCC and MBC officers to work jointly to provide a report with further detail on the results of VISUM modelling on DS4. This should give consideration to the following:
· Transport mitigation measures to support development. This should include consultation with bus and rail operator alongside methods to increase multi occupancy car use; and
· The phasing of new development.
2. That the Board reconvene in approximately 4 weeks’ time to consider the report.
NOTE: Councillor Carter joined the meeting at 5.25pm, Councillor Ash left the meeting at 5.46pm, Councillor J.A Wilson left the meeting at 6.12pm, Councillor Carter left the meeting at 6.49pm and Councillor Whittle left the meeting at 6.53pm.
122. Duration of meeting
5.00pm to 7.11pm