onlineFOCUS – News and Stuff For Rochford District since 2003

 

Archive for American Ideas

Well Done Liberal England

 

central park arrest

Congrats to Jonathan Calder – his “Liberal England”  has won the  Lib Dem Blog of  the Year  award.

This weekend he has written about the late Lynsey de Paul,  the Queen Mother in Market Harborough in 1927, and a walrus in St Pancras.

Another worthy blog belongs to Mark Pack. He shows a remarkable bit of  wartime “town planning” here.

 

Could This Really Work? It’s Good If It Does…..

Solar roadways that produce energy, can stay frost-free and with inbuilt graphics and lighting!

More about it here.

“When Planners Get Bored”

atg road

Nothing to do with our local area, but how would you like to live in an area where all the road names begin with “Z” ?
Or where all the side names are three letters long, so you have barely pronouncable addresses like “Atf Road” which is of course next to “Atg Road”?
Or where twelve “roads” converge at one point?

Find out the background to these at the geography blog “TwelveMileCircle”

Learning From Another Chris

Here’s a couple of videos showing Republican Governor of New Jersey, Chris Christie.

In the first one he says “My job is to work for the people who elected me , and not to work for my political party first.” That’s a viewpoint we certainly have at onlineFOCUS:

In the second one he tells an eight year old that the best thing about being Governor is that the serious ‘best thing’ about being governor is that “Every day you have the chance to change peoples lives for the better” As councillors we also have a chance, though it’s not so easy….. Then he explains what the fun ‘best thing’ is ….. and gets a lot of laughter.

The 36 Street Stumble

In New York City , one step at a subway station was slightly out of kilter with the rest. It was causing people to stumble.

It was only half-an-inch too high, but that half-inch was enough to make people trip up.

To get it fixed, a filmmaker created this video, which has now had over a million views – and the problem is now being dealt with.

Is this worth trying here for a pothole or two?

Hat-Tip : Andrew Sullivan.

Bumps On the Roof Of Our Cars?

Nissan with bumps on roof.

If you drive on roads like the A13 you’ll find quite a few drivers are sticking to 50 mph and cruise control to save fuel.

Here’s another idea (no guarantees that it works!)

We found a new article on the Pacific Standard website that’s quiet intriguing.

It’s about a Californian deep-sea diver and inventor who’s looked at the tiny bumps on whales. He reckons that if you put the same type of bumps on car roofs you improve the aerodynamics and save on fuel:

The pods—spaced four inches apart and located 10 inches from the lip of the roof—reduced aerodynamic drag by 5 percent when a two-door VW Golf was driven at 65 miles per hour….

The pods come in loud flashy colors. Some can be permanently glued to the roof. A more expensive model attaches via magnets. Prices currently range from $60 to $100, but those, Evans said, will come down to reflect how much a driver might save in a couple of months.
Aside from the monetary relief, Evans said the pods offer drivers the opportunity do something about climate change.
“People don’t want to be told what to do; they want to do it themselves.”

The sellers of these bumps have a website here.

Does anybody fancy being a pioneer? Should County Highways invest in a set and see if they work?

The Long-Term Future Of Motoring?

Driving can be fun and pleasurable.

But it’s not much fun driving along congested roads (such as the A13 at the moment) , or being involved in an accident.

We will have more and more cars on our roads in the future – is the answer to have driverless cars? They would very probably reduce congestion and improve safety.Google are working on the idea….

You don’t believe it? Watch these:

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Ron Oatham Ron Oatham Bruce Smart Bruce Smart Chris Stanley Chris Stanley
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Latest Comments

  • Christine Paine: We can of course all help bees, butterflies, pollinators of all description and other wildlife by...
  • admin: I never condone arson, but I know where you are coming from….
  • Oz the Angry: If I hear a politician uttering the words “Hard working families” one more time I am going...
  • bruce smart: If I am wrong then I should of checked.
  • Jim Cripps: Government quota’s, government compliant Council Junta’s, Government Inspectors = the...
  • A.Matthews: Am I wrong or what Bruce but should that be “off̶ 1; not “of ? !
  • bruce smart: The missing apostrophe is not as irritating as the use of the word of when it should be have. As in I...
  • Alison: The curse of auto-correct has left me branded as a purveyor of an aberrant apostrophe. Nil desperandum.
  • Alison: Glad it’s the shoe and not a copycat of the Banksy-imitatin g phenomenon currently sweeping Manchester...
  • bruce smart: Seems to me that the social housing tenants need to remember where they were before they moved into it....
  • Christine Paine: Bruce, you are right, if they weren’t busy then yes some would close, however, my thoughts are...
  • John Mason: I am glad that you have also raised Homelessness. The Review Committee has been investigating the extent...
  • Oz the Positive: Toby@12, I had completely forgotten that the Taxi Drivers run the town, how is it that these small...
  • Toby Mountain: There needs to be some rounded thinking and less bureaucracy – Look at the calendar and start...
  • bruce smart: Christine – we probably all agree that there is an excessive number of eating places in the Town...
  • admin: Well , thats a pity , Oz.
  • Oz the Dissapointed...: Ron, thank you for the reply however I am slightly disappointed, I’m looking to vote...
  • admin: James, the action plan’s modified version has the following paragraph: “The Council recognises the...
  • Angelina: Good luck Ron.
  • Christine Paine: Bruce, I think you are approaching a Catch 22 situation with the High St. The more coffee shops,...
  • James Newport: Ron wasn’t the A1 target being reduced in the action plan recently as it couldn’t be...
  • admin: One thing that Ron didn’t mention was the campaign to keep free parking on Saturday afternoons in...
  • Ron Oatham: The council’s targets are 75% retail(A1)in the primary shopping area and 50% in secondary. These...
  • bruce smart: Best way is for people to use the existing shops and make them profitable. Being positive, I think...
  • Oz the Positive: Ron, could you please give me your thoughts on the best way to maintain the retail / service balance...
  • Jim Cripps: OK thank you CHRIS – think I will do an open letter ( via the ECHO letters page ) and ask what they...
  • Chris Black: Jim. District and Parish councillors can get involved in the really local highways stuff – for...
  • Christine Paine: It’s not so much the queues Oz, it’s the fact that the road system is not robust enough...
  • Oz the Positive: Ladies, I feel your pain, all that traffic, I don’t blame you for complaining, just like the...
  • Jim Cripps: ECC are responsible for Highways – just which (Parish/Town/Di strict ) Councillors represent us (...

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500 HOUSES BETWEEN LONDON ROAD AND RAWRETH LANE

There's lots of information on the District Council website about the planning application "North of London Road ". To see it , just click here.

The Core Strategy

This is the official master document for planning policy in our district! To download it, click here click here. (2.5mb)

Planning Applications…

If you want information on a particular planning application, you can find it on the District Council website here.

If you want to know what new planning applications have been submitted this week, click here.

Reporting A Problem

If you want to report a problem, you can email Lib Dems councillors by clicking here.
There's also an independent website called FixMyStreet. It's very good for reporting minor street problems like holes in the road, grafitti or failed streetlights. You can find FixMyStreet here.

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To find the food hygiene rating for eating places and other businesses in our district , click here.

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“Rayleigh was the birthplace of Britain’s first surviving quintuplets, but that’s just one of its many claims to fame”

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