Agenda and draft minutes

Venue: Council Chamber, Civic Offices, Reading

Contact: Richard Woodford - Committee Services  Email: richard.woodford@reading.gov.uk

Link: Link to observe meeting

Items
No. Item

23.

Declarations of Interest

Minutes:

Councillor Ayub declared an interest in item 28 on the grounds that he owned a hackney carriage.

24.

Minutes of previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 125 KB

Minutes:

The Minutes of the meeting of 14 September 2022 were confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chair.

25.

Questions from Members of the Public and Councillors pdf icon PDF 63 KB

Questions submitted pursuant to Standing Order 36 in relation to matters falling within the Sub-Committee’s Powers & Duties which have been submitted in writing and received by the Head of Legal & Democratic Services no later than four clear working days before the meeting.

Minutes:

A question on the following matter was submitted, and answered by the Lead Councillor for Climate Strategy and Transport on behalf of the Chair:

Questioner

Subject

Councillor White

Tackling Speeding on Northumberland Avenue

(The full text of the question and reply was made available on the Reading Borough Council website).

26.

Petitions

To receive petitions on traffic management matters submitted in accordance with the Sub-Committee’s Terms of Reference.

26a

Petition - Controlled Pedestrian Crossing at Henley Road/Prospect Street/Westfield Road pdf icon PDF 93 KB

To report to the Sub-Committee the receipt of a petition requesting the Council to install pedestrian crossing facilities at the locally named ‘Last Crumb’ junction (the junction of Henley Road, Prospect Street, Peppard Road and Westfield Road).

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Executive Director for Economic Growth and Neighbourhood Services submitted a report on the receipt of a petition, asking the Council requesting the Council to install pedestrian crossing facilities at the locally named ‘Last Crumb’ junction (the junction of Henley Road, Prospect Street, Peppard Road and Westfield Road). The petition contained the results of a survey with 1341 responses.

The report explained that a request for controlled crossing facilities at this junction was already contained within the ‘Requests for Traffic Management Measures’ that was regularly submitted to the Sub-Committee.  The report recommended the entry on this list was updated to reflect the receipt of the petition and of recent officer correspondence on this request.  The following appendices were attached to the report:

Appendix 1

Officer summary of the survey results

Appendix 2

Comments received in the survey

Appendix 3

Indicative potential location for a pedestrian refuge island, as has been suggested

The report explained that on 13 October 2022, a petition had been submitted to the Council that had contained the results of a survey that had been conducted by Matt Rodda MP with 1,341 responses from residents and which had followed meetings with Ward Councillors and residents.  The petition read as follows:

Please accept this email as a formal petition to the Council to install a pedestrian crossing at the Last Crumb junction. Matt Rodda will be emailing you the results of the recently completed survey which I understand can be accepted instead of signature.”

The Council had previously received a petition that had requested the installation of controlled pedestrian crossing facilities at the ‘Last Crumb’ junction to the meeting on 2 November 2017 (Minute 42(b) refers) and an update report was submitted to the meeting on 11 January 2018 (Minute 58 refers).  At the January 2018 meeting the Sub-Committee agreed to add the request of pedestrian crossing facilities to the Council’s regularly reported Requests for Traffic Management Measures list. 

It had been acknowledged that the junction was a very traffic sensitive junction and the implementation of a pedestrian facility within a traffic signal controlled junction would reduce traffic flow and potential capacity and would need to be taken into consideration.  The report recommended that traffic impact modelling should be part of the scheme development once funding had been identified.

The report stated that the most challenging aspect of the request was the funding that would be required and there was no identified funding to develop and deliver pedestrian enhancements at the junction.  In addition to the professional survey, modelling and design work that would be required, it was likely that the junction would require a complete technology and hardware refresh for the traffic signal equipment and much of the cable ducting would likely need to be excavated and replaced.  Factoring in other works it was expected that the cost would be in excess of £250,000, although this was very indicative as the true cost would not be know until after the survey work had been completed.  ...  view the full minutes text for item 26a

26b

Petition - Request to Urgently Review Safety at Henley Road/Caversham Lakes Access Road Junction pdf icon PDF 92 KB

To report to the Sub-Committee the receipt of a petition requesting the Council to undertake a safety review and to take immediate steps to improve the safety at the junction of Henley Road, Caversham Park Road and ‘Caversham Lakes’ access road.

Minutes:

The Executive Director for Economic Growth and Neighbourhood Services submitted a report on the receipt of a petition, requesting the Council to undertake a safety review and to take immediate steps to improve the safety at the junction of Henley Road, Caversham Park Road and ‘Caversham Lakes’ access road.  The report also provided background information on the Caversham Lakes development planning application, police supplied casualty data and recommended continued monitoring of planning appeals/re-submissions and casualty data.

The report explained that on 1 November 2022, an online petition had been submitted to the Council that had contained 475 signatures and read as follows:

As residents in the area, we regularly see accidents and near misses at the very dangerous junction of the access road to Caversham Lakes with Henley Road. This has been a hot spot for many years, even before the opening of the leisure facilities at Caversham Lakes. Turning on to the A4155, Henley Road, is particularly dangerous, with poor sight lines and a confusing staggered junction close to traffic lights to Caversham Park Village. Oxfordshire County Council have recorded concerns regarding the Access Road/ Henley Road/ Caversham Park Road junction. Eye and Dunsden Parish Council report numerous accidents in the area, including a fatality. The confusing boundary issues must not prevent action being taken.

It is clear that the formal accident data substantially under records the number and the nature of accidents at this junction. We urge the Council to take immediate steps to improve safety at the junction.”

The report explained that the Council and Thames Valley Police had a close working relationship regarding incidents on the highway involving casualties and the Council would review the results of the police supplied data to consider whether there were any patterns, or specific factors/causes, that could be addressed by reasonable engineering solutions or highway alterations.  However, upon reviewing the previous three year period of data that had been supplied up to the end of June 2022, there had been one incident at the junction, which had been recorded with a severity of ‘slight’. 

Planning Officers had provided comments to South Oxfordshire District Council (SODC) in relation to the retrospective planning application that had been submitted for the Caversham Lakes development and had included a recommendation of an objection on Highway safety grounds.  No alterations had been identified at the junction to date given that there had been insufficient information supplied with the application to ascertain whether the junction would be in excess of its actual capacity.  SODC had refused planning permission and Council planning officers would continue to engage in response to any future appeals or resubmissions.

At the invitation of the Chair the petition organiser, Candi Hall, addressed the Sub-Committee on behalf of the petitioners.  An arial photograph of the junction was presented at the meeting at the request of the petitioner.

Resolved –

(1)     That the report be noted;

(2)     That relevant officers continue to engage with South Oxfordshire District Council in response to any future  ...  view the full minutes text for item 26b

27.

Petition Update - Kendrick Court inclusion in Resident Permit Parking scheme pdf icon PDF 95 KB

A report providing the Sub-Committee with an update to the petition reported submitted to the September 2022 Traffic Management Sub-Committee, following the receipt of further information from the lead petitioner.

Minutes:

Further to Minute 16(b) of the previous meeting, the Executive Director of Economic Growth and Neighbourhood Services submitted a report providing an update to the petition on resident parking permit eligibility for Kendrick Court following the receipt of further information from the lead petitioner.  The report also set out the rationale for the current exclusion of Kendrick Court from the full permit eligibility within the zone, set out how a change to the eligibility could be made, referred to further information that had been received and recommended against making the change.

The report explained that officers had considered the further information and feedback that had been received from the lead petitioner and the themes were included in the reports along with comments from officers. 

The report stated that it remained the recommendation that Kendrick Court was not included for full RPP eligibility, meaning that the eligibility for the full permit entitlement in the Traffic Regulation Order would not be changed.  It would also not be reasonable to consider Kendrick Court in isolation of other properties that were in the same position and to include all such properties would have significant and unmanageable risks on the saturation level of on-street parking within the zone area thereafter.  Residents of Kendrick Court would continue to have the option of applying for discretionary parking permits and the points that had been raised in the petition could be used to strengthen their case. 

At the invitation of the Chair Edward Hammond addressed the Sub-Committee. 

The Sub-Committee discussed the report and agreed by a majority that the current arrangements should remain in place and that residents should apply on an individual basis for a discretionary parking permit stating the reasons why they needed a permit, and it not being just because there was limited parking in Kendrick Court, which the Sub-Committee would consider sympathetically.

Resolved –

(1)     That the report be noted;

(2)     That the current address eligibility for the full allocation of resident parking permits remains unchanged;

(3)     That the lead petitioner be informed of the decisions of the Sub-Committee, following publication of the agreed minutes of the meeting and that residents be advised to apply for discretionary parking permits;

(4)     That no public inquiry be held into the proposals.

28.

Petition Update - Private Hire access to Kings Road & Duke Street Bus Lanes pdf icon PDF 90 KB

A report providing the Sub-Committee with an update to the petition presented at the September 2022 Traffic Management Sub-Committee, following the receipt of further information from the lead petitioner.

Minutes:

Further to Minute 16(a) of the previous meeting, the Executive Director of Economic Growth and Neighbourhood Services submitted a report providing an update to the petition for private hire vehicle use of Kings Road and Duke Street following the receipt of further information form the lead petitioner.  The report recommended against pursuing the change to the access exemptions in these bus lanes at the current time, set out the reasons and recommended that consideration of bus lane access be carried out as part of a further strategic evaluation, in the context of local and national strategic priorities and policy, including the Local Transport Plan, Bus Service Improvement Plan and Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plans.

The report explained that following the previous meeting the lead petitioner had provided further information to the Council, reporting the local challenges that existed regarding the challenges with educational establishment recruiting school transport drivers.  In addition to the lengthy application process, it being suggested that potential drivers were finding it unappealing to apply for the limited work particularly when the vehicles were having to use general traffic lanes and contend with the associated traffic.  It was also suggested that allowing private hire access to these bus lanes would contribute to expedited journeys for school transport providers and make this work more appealing, thus improving the level of service.  It was proposed further that many bus lanes in the Borough were being used by Oxfordshire plated vehicles that had been licensed as Hackney Carriages, but were mostly carrying out executive industry work. 

Some of the Borough’s bus lanes permitted access by other vehicle types, such as motorcycles and taxis, including private hire vehicles, and officers were separately aware of requests for wider access by these vehicle types.  Enabling a wider range of vehicle access would increase the volumes of traffic using the bus lanes and it would inevitably have an impact on the effectiveness of the lanes for its core purpose, increasing the length of bus journey times.  This would also risk creating barriers to cycling by adding the level of traffic. 

The report stated that it was important that such recommendation for change were made appropriately and in line with local and national policies and strategies.  It was an additional concern of officers that adding vehicles to the Kings Road outbound bus lane might risk additional contribution to casualty incidents along the route, as there would be a speed differential against general traffic lanes at busier times and the vehicles would be lower in profile compared to buses.  The petitioner had also made reference to recent changes to the Kings Road inbound bus lane access, but the report noted that the outcome of the changes was a reduction in access over the previous restriction.

Changes to access would require a change to the Traffic Regulation Order that underlaid each restriction.  This change would require a statutory consultation to be carried out on the new draft order and back office changes to the enforcement software would  ...  view the full minutes text for item 28.

29.

Requests for Traffic Management Measures pdf icon PDF 85 KB

A report informing the Sub-Committee of requests for Traffic Management Measures that have been raised by members of the public, other organisations/representatives and elected Members of the Borough Council.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Executive Director for Economic Growth and Neighbourhood Services submitted a report informing the Sub-Committee of requests for traffic management measures that had been raised by members of the public, other organisations/representatives and Councillors.  These were measure that had either been previously reported, or those that would not typically be addressed in other programmes, where funding was yet to be identified.  The following appendices were attached to the report:

Appendix 1

List of requests that were new to the update report with initial Officer comments and recommendations;

Appendix 2

List of requests that had previously been reported, where significant amendments were proposed, with Officer comments and recommendations;

Appendix 3

The principal list of requests, as updated following the previous report to the Sub-Committee in March 2022. It also contained the prioritised list of cycling and walking measures from the LCWIP;

Appendix 4

The results of a survey carried out by Ward Councillors in the Amersham Road area, supporting the amendment request in Appendix 2.

The Sub-Committee discussed the report and it was pointed out that Walnut Way already appeared in Appendix 3, albeit with slightly different officer comments.

Resolved –

(1)     That the report be noted;

(2)     That having considered the officer recommendation for each request, set out in Appendix 1 attached to the report, the entries be retained on the primary list of requests, as set out in Appendix 3 attached to the report, subject to:

·         Walnut Way being moved to Appendix 2 as it already appeared in Appendix 3;

(3)     That the items previously submitted to the Sub-Committee, as set out in Appendix 2, attached to the report, be agreed.

30.

Evaluation of Local 15% CIL Scheme - Redlands Traffic Calming pdf icon PDF 116 KB

A report providing the Sub-Committee with a summary of the findings following the delivery of the measures in 2021 to improve motorist compliance with the 20mph zone restrictions in specific locations within Redlands Ward and Katesgrove Ward and the undertaking of comparative speed surveys and independent Road Safety Audit.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Executive Director of Environment and Neighbourhood Services submitted a report providing the Sub-Committee with a summary of the findings following delivery of the measures in 2021 to improve motorist compliance with the 20mph zone restrictions in specific locations within Redlands Ward and Katesgrove Ward and the undertaking of comparative speed surveys and an independent Road Safety Audit.  The scheme drawings, as advertised during statutory consultation in 2020 were attached to the report at Appendix 1 and an enlargement of the priority flow measure recommended for alteration was attached to the report at Appendix 2.

The report explained that speed surveys had been commissioned and carried out in early 2022.  The surveys had been conducted over a representative one week period, 24 hours per day, which would have captured both the busier work/school traffic mid-week, leisure type traffic at the weekends and speeds during periods where overall traffic volumes had been far lower, for example overnight.  It was accepted that it was not possible to exactly replicate the conditions of prior surveys, but best endeavours had been used to conduct the surveys in the same locations as those carried out previously and the results provided the closest factual baseline and evaluation measures of a scheme of this type.  It was standard practice to analyse the ‘85th percentile’ speeds, which was the speed that 85% of vehicles were travelling at or below and the report set out the results for Allcroft, Kendrick, Morgan and Redlands Roads.  The result of the speed survey comparison had indicated that the delivery of the measures had achieved speed reductions, particularly in Allcroft and Morgan Roads where full-width speed humps had been installed, although a proportion of motorists had continued to speed, regardless of the physical measure that had been put in place to discourage them from doing so.

Independent Road Safety Audits had also been conducted for the scheme, both at the design stage and on-street, following delivery of the scheme.  The audits were intended to provide an independent view on the safety and regulatory compliance of the features.  Officers had also received feedback from residents and users both directly and via Ward Councillors.  The primary themes of the feedback were as follows:

·         The speed humps on Allcroft Road and Morgan Road were too high;

·         Congestion was caused by buildouts on Redlands Road and Kendrick Road;

·         Placement of cushions in the context of cycling and on-street parking;

·         Priority-flow feature on Redlands Road (near Allcroft Road) was causing congestion and was unsafe.

During the post-delivery independent Road Safety Audit the auditor had been made aware of the primary themes of feedback from the scheme, informal comment was made in reference to the parking bay build out on Redlands Road, but it was the priority flow feature on Redlands Road about which they had raised a suggestion of a review requirement.  The issue raised was that the parking bay immediately to the south side created the potential of a long section of carriageway that would  ...  view the full minutes text for item 30.

31.

Cycle Forum Minutes pdf icon PDF 68 KB

A report informing the Sub-Committee of the discussions and actions from the Cycle Forum held on 2 August 2022.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Director of Environment and Neighbourhood Services submitted a report informing the Sub-Committee of the discussion and actions from the Cycle Forum that had been held in August 2022.  The Cycle Forum Notes from the 2 August 2022 meeting were appended to the report.

Resolved –    That the minutes from the Cycle Forum held on 2 August 2022 be noted.

32.

Exclusion of Press and Public

The following motion will be moved by the Chair:

“That, pursuant to Section 100A of the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended) members of the press and public be excluded during consideration of the following item on the agenda, as it is likely that there would be disclosure of exempt information as defined in the relevant Paragraphs of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of that Act”

Minutes:

Resolved -   

That, pursuant to Section 100A of the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended) members of the press and public be excluded during consideration of item 33 below, as it was likely that there would be disclosure of exempt information as defined in Paragraphs 1 and 2 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of that Act.

33.

Applications for Discretionary Parking Permits

To consider appeals against the refusal of applications for the issue of discretionary parking permits.

 

Minutes:

The Executive Director for Economic Growth and Neighbourhood Services submitted a report giving details of the background to the decisions to refuse applications for Discretionary Parking Permits from 15 applicants, who had subsequently appealed against these decisions.

Resolved –

(1)     That, with regard to applications 4 and 11, a first discretionary permit be issued, personal to the applicants;

(2)     That, with regard to applications 3 and 12 a first discretionary permit be issued personal to the applicant and subject to the applicant submitting all the required proofs;

(3)     That, with regard to application 8, personal discretionary visitor books be issued, subject to the standard scheme limits for the number of books that could be issued each year;

(4)     That the Executive Director for Economic Growth and Neighbourhood Services’ decision to refuse applications 1, 2, 5, 6, 7, 9, 10, 13, 14, and 15 be upheld.

(Exempt information as defined in Paragraphs 1 and 2).