Apologies for no item tonight, blame it on the Dartford Tunnel…!
We picked up recently on a complaint from a motorcyclist that his bike didn’t trigger the sensors at the traffic lights at the western end of Rawreth Lane. We’ve now had a reply from a helpful person at County Highways:
With regards to the traffic signals at the junction with A1245 Chelmsford Road/ Rawreth Lane.
I can confirm that a fault was raised and an engineer attended site on 27th June. Although no fault was found with the Rawreth Lane detection, the engineer did increase the sensitivity of the detectors which it is hoped will address the issue of motorcycles not being detected.
From the Echo:
WORK is set to begin on three major transport schemes in South Essex after the Government agreed to plough in £155.8m of funding.
A four-and-a-half mile stretch of the A13 between Pitsea and the Orsett Cock, in Thurrock, is to be widened to six lanes while the A127 will get an overhaul at four-pinch points.
Southend’s Victoria Avenue will also get a facelift, while transport in the town will get a £7million boost.
The A13 needs to be widened to 6 lanes largely because of the the new London Gateway container port.
The only improvement in our district is actually on the very edge – a planned £15 million pound improvement to the Fairglen interchange, which will be welcomed by many commuters. Though what impact will this have on the proposed employment land and traveller site that RDC are planning there?
Beeches Bridge in Beeches Road in Rawreth will be closed for much of the summer to allow reconstruction work on the bridge.
And if you are not sure where Beeches Road is, it’s to the west of Watery Lane. So nobody will be able to drive directly along Watery Lane to Battlesbridge , this will force most of the Watery Lane traffic onto Rawreth Lane for 12 weeks.
At tonight’s’ Full Council meeting, free parking in council car parks on Saturday afternoons was SAVED.
Conservative cabinet member Mike Steptoe said that certain contingency reserves were no longer needed, so there was no need to charge on Saturday afternoons… at this time. When it came to a vote, it was overwhelmingly in favour of keeping Saturday afternoons free.
This is a great victory for everyone who campaigned against this . Don’t believe for a moment that Saturday afternoons would have been saved without everyone’s efforts ! Pressure from opposing councillors and the public has paid off…
However , the increases in charges were still voted through.
Full write-up later when we get the minutes of the meeting.
One of the items discussed at last week’s local highways panel was the junction of Watery Lane , Hullbridge Road and Lower Road. There have been five ‘personal injury collisions’ in the past five years – one of them being serious. Three of them involved turning right into Watery Lane; all of them were in the morning rush-hour.
So County Highways engineers proposed some modest improvements which have now been agreed:
Total cost of this is £6,500 and should make the junction a bit safer. Though it’s a pity you have to have an accident analysis to get road markings repainted…
For a few years now, the County Council has had teams of ‘rangers’ to do work such as cutting back vegetation on highways. Not simple grass cutting, but dealing with the sort of foliage that covers up road signs.
The County and the District Council are now launching a new scheme whereby the District Council takes over the ranger’s work. This was discussed today at the Local Highways Panel. The County will give the District extra funding for this, and hopefully this will give a more responsive service. It should stop road signs being covered up by greenery, as in London Road in Rayleigh!
This work is , in theory, separate from the normal cutting of grass verges. But we can see the successors to the rangers doing some cutting of grass verges by special request when the normal grasscutting programme isn’t adequate.
However it’s going to take a while to get this new scheme running, so don’t hold your breath waiting!
Meet some of the luckiest people alive…. and remember to check both ways before crossing the street….
We have the Local Highways Panel next Thursday, and County Highways officers are now recommending that the bus stop opposite Hambro Parade stays where it is! As we reported last October most councillors on the panel – Conservative and UKIP, as it happens – had voted to move it down to the junction with Ferndale Road, with a cost of up to £75,000.
The report says:
- The ECC Road Safety Team did not support the scheme going ahead
- There was a councillor objection in the local press – that was Ron Oatham!
- Rawreth Parish Council objected
- A Road safety audit ‘identified many points of safety/design for both the proposed bus stop and proposed layby location’
- “Consulation with Stategy and Engagement and Passenger Transportwho both were not in favour… Congestion will not be removed”
- Diverting BT infrastructure at the layby would be expensive
- insufficient space to safely install the bus bay.
So hopefully on Thursday the panel will decide to drop the idea and leave the bus stop where it is!
We have the final vote on car parking charges at an extraordinary council meeting on July 1st. There’s a very good chance that we can win the vote to keep free car parking on Saturday afternoons. Though probably the other increases in charges will go through.
You can find the agenda here.
The officers report is signed by Shaun Scrutton as Head of Planning and Transportation , rather than someone on the finance side of things. Here’s some extracts:
DISCUSSION – SATURDAY AFTERNOON CHARGES
5.1 The proposal to reintroduce charges on Saturday afternoons resulted in the
greatest number of objections to the proposed Parking Order, with the
concerns primarily focussing on the car parks in Rayleigh.
5.2 Of most concern to objectors was the possible impact of Saturday afternoon
charges on trading in the town centres and that being the case, Members will
need to determine whether this element of the proposed Parking Order should
10.1 It is proposed that Council RESOLVES
(1) To agree the revisions to the tariff change for Blue Badge holders, and
the introduction of a one hour concession beyond the expiry time
printed on their ticket.
(2) Determine whether to introduce car parking charges on Saturday
EXTRAORDINARY COUNCIL – 1 July 2014 Item 4
(3) To agree all the remaining proposed changes to the Parking Order
including the tariff revisions and adjustment to the charging period in
Old Ship Lane, Rochford.
Interestingly, the officers’ recommendation is to agree to all the increases and changes proposed EXCEPT for charging on Saturday afternoons. The recommendation on this is merely to make a decision…. so there is no pressure from council officers to start charging on Saturday afternoons.
It would be good to have some people in the public gallery for this one… could be an interesting night. The meeting starts at 7:30 pm at the Civic Suite in Rayleigh.
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