MAIDSTONE BOROUGH COUNCIL
Strategic Planning, Sustainability and Transportation Committee
Minutes of the meeting held on Wednesday 6 July 2016
Councillor D Burton (Chairman), and
Councillors English, Mrs Grigg, D Mortimer, Munford, Prendergast, Springett, de Wiggondene and Wilby
Councillors Clark and Willis
26. Apologies for Absence
There were no apologies received.
Councillor de Wiggondene was absent from the meeting.
27. Notification of Substitute Members
There were no Substitute Members.
28. Urgent Items
There were no Urgent Items.
29. Notification of Visiting Members
Councillors Clarke and Willis were present to speak on item 12.
30. Disclosures by Members and Officers
There were no disclosures by Members or Officers.
31. Disclosures of Lobbying
All Members declared they had been lobbied by the North Loose Residents Association and, over the time of its preparation, all had been lobbied at on the Integrated Transport Strategy.
32. Exempt items
That items on the agenda be taken in public as proposed.
33. Minutes of the meeting held on 14 June 2016
That the minutes of the meeting held on 14 June 2016 be approved as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.
34. Presentation of Petitions (if any)
There were no petitions.
35. Questions and answer session for members of the public
There were no questions from members of the public.
36. Committee Work Programme
That the Committee Work Programme be noted.
37. Report of the Head of Planning and Development - Maidstone Integrated Transport Strategy and Maidstone Walking and Cycling Strategy
The Committee considered the approval of the revised versions of the Maidstone Integrated Transport Strategy (ITS) 2011-2031 and the Maidstone Walking and Cycling Strategy (W&CS) 2011-2013 for consideration by the Maidstone Joint Transport Board at its meeting on 13 July 2016.
The Committee were reminded that since the meeting of 14 June 2016, where the representations to the consultation on the ITS and W&CS were presented to the Committee, the two documents had been separated and a few minor changes made as agreed at the meeting.
It was confirmed that Maidstone Borough Council and Kent County Council would be working together to seek funding from the new Access Fund launched by Central Government recently to implement measures included in the ITS and the W&CS.
Paragraph 8.20 of the ITS was highlighted to the Committee and they were informed that the justification for the action to develop a Leeds/Langley bypass would be bound up in the review process of the ITS and W&CS in 2022.
Councillors Willis and Clarke addressed the Committee as Visiting Members.
It was confirmed that the W&CS made reference to, and the ITS was tied in with, the Kent County Council (KCC) draft Active Travel Strategy. It was confirmed that any highway network interventions listed in these documents would need to go through options testing and full consultation before implementation.
Funding had been secured for the provision of further cycle parking and improvements at rail stations. Funds were also being pursued from the New Access Fund and S106 funds for cycle and pedestrian improvements to the north west of Maidstone. Detailed costings for these improvements had been included in the Infrastructure Delivery Plan.
Concerns were raised regarding the wording of paragraph 10.24 and the reference to confirmation that junction mitigation measures were possible at the A229 Loose Road/Boughton Lane/Cripple Street junction. It was felt that measures could not be implemented that would improve traffic flow at this junction without input from Kent County Highways. It was agreed the wording of this paragraph would be changed to reflect a less definite stance and remove reference to the Boughton Street development.
Concern was also raised regarding the omission of wording in the ITS expressing a commitment to work with the Maidstone Cycling Campaign Forum to ensure the implementation of the ITS and the W&CS together. It was agreed that this would be added to Action C5 of the ITS and the W&CS.
The Committee discussed the potential for modal shift, in particular in the rural areas not served by frequent buses. The Committee were informed that the provision of secure cycle parking at bus stops on radial routes had not been ruled out. Paragraph 10.6 of the W&CS recommended a detailed audit of the borough’s walking and cycling corridors to identify missing links, gaps or barriers, including locations for new or extended cycle parking.
The Committee discussed the provision of radial cycle routes linking rural areas to bus and rail links with suitable cycle storage. The Committee was informed that the creation of the routes that would make up a radial cycle route were outlined in the Action Plan on pages 41 to 47 of the W&CS. It was agreed that Action C2 would be rewritten to include a cross reference to this and Action C6 and also change the words ‘rural service centres’ to rural settlements.
It was agreed to include a reference to the North Wood cycle route extension towards the Town centre to Action SEM2
That subject to the following changes, the revised draft of the Maidstone Integrated Transport Strategy and Maidstone Walking and Cycling Strategy documents be agreed for consideration by the Maidstone Joint Transport Board at its meeting on 13 July 2016:
Paragraph 10.24 (at page 61 of the Integrated Transport Strategy) to be deleted and replace with the following paragraph:
· ’10.24 – Various options were therefore considered to improve highway capacity, comprising the widening/reconfiguration of the existing signal junction as well as its replacement by a mini-roundabout. The results of the junction modelling indicate that, with the implementation of mitigation measures, proposed and committed developments in the area can be delivered with improved operating conditions for car and bus users alike on the operation of the A229 Loose Road/Boughton Lane/Cripple Street junction.’
Action C5 (at pages 29 and 52 of the Integrated Transport Strategy and page 23 of the Walking and Cycling Strategy) to be deleted and replaced with the following paragraph:
· Support the Maidstone Cycle Campaign Forum as a group to promote the cycling cause in the borough; in order to ensure the Walking and Cycling Strategy and the Integrated Transport Strategy provided a coherent strategy for the promotion of Active Travel in the borough.’
Voting: For – 5 Against – 0 Abstentions – 3
Action C2 (at page 15 of the Walking and Cycling Strategy) to be deleted and replaced with the following paragraph:
· ‘Maintain and further develop cycle routes in rural settlements connecting local amenities and transport hubs (rail stations and bus stops where new and improved cycle parking can be provided in conjunction with Action C6) to housing.’
The Proposal to Action SEM 2 (at page 41 of the Walking and Cycling Strategy) to be deleted and replaced with the following paragraph:
· ‘Loose “Greenway” – cycle route from Old Drive to Cripple Street. Potential further extension southwards to Kirkdale and to secure a northward extension towards Postley Road.’
Voting: For – 9 Against – 0 Abstentions – 0
38. Duration of meeting
6:30pm to 7:42pm