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Agenda and minutes

Joint Transportation Board
Tuesday 4 September 2018 7.00 pm

Venue: Room B12, Civic Centre, Home Gardens, Dartford, Kent, DA1 1DR

Contact: Email: memberservices@dartford.gov.uk 

Items
Note No. Item

14.

Apologies for Absence.

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Mr. Jan Ozog (KCC), Councillor Mrs. Julie Ozog (DBC) and Cllr. Richard Lees (Dartford Parish representative).

 

The Chairman confirmed that all Board Members had received a copy of the ‘Update’ email from Southeastern Railways, in the absence of Mr Chris Vinson from the company, due to illness.

 

15.

Declarations of Interest

To receive declarations of interest from Members including the terms(s) of the Grant of Dispensation (if any).

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

16.

To confirm the Minutes of the meeting of the Dartford Joint Transportation Board held on 5 June 2018 pdf icon PDF 168 KB

Minutes:

 

                        RESOLVED:

 

1.    That the minutes of the meetings of the Joint Transportation Board held on 5 June 2018 be confirmed as accurate.

17.

Urgent Items

The Chairman will announce his decision as to whether there are any urgent items and their position on the agenda.

Minutes:

The Chairman conformed that there were no urgent items for the Board to consider.

KCC

18.

Matters Arising pdf icon PDF 46 KB

This report advises Members on the progress of matters arising from previous meetings of the Board.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Members received a report which advised progress on outstanding issues from previous meetings of the Board.

 

                        RESOLVED:

 

1.    That Board Members note the contents of the report.

19.

Chairman's Update: Road Safety in Dartford - Brent Primary School, London Road

The Chairman will update Members as appropriate.

Minutes:

The Chairman confirmed that all Board Members had received a hard copy of a letter [forwarded by KCC following publication of the agenda] written by a Brent primary school parent who had expressed her concern over specific road safety issues in the vicinity of the school in London Road Dartford, and the adjacent Fleet estate. The letter had been co-signed by 55 (fifty-five) Dartford residents. She advised that a parent/resident representative would address the Board with her permission, to highlight those concerns. 

 

Drawing on the contents of the letter, the parent/resident spokesperson advised Members of the following background to road safety issues in the area:

 

·         The volume of traffic on the London Road adjacent to the school and the estate had increased dramatically in recent years, and was set to rise even further, with the planned construction of an 8 form entry school in the proximity of Brent primary school;

·         The speed of the traffic using London Road was of particular concern with traffic passing Brent school in excess of 30 m.p.h. given that the existing speed camera was not sited outside the school but further along London Road outside the petrol station;

·         The national campaign by the charity BRAKE advocated a 20 m.p.h. speed limit (rather than 30 m.p.h.) around schools to increase the likelihood of victims surviving an accident at the lower speed. The Council’s leaflet on road safety was a start, but a 20 m.p.h. speed restriction was urgently required in the vicinity around Brent school;

·         Literature from the national body NICE (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) testified to the detrimental health effects traffic pollution had on children and urgent action was now required to address pollution levels around Brent and all Dartford schools;

·         Illegal and inconsiderate parking outside the school, including by parents on both sides of London Road and close to the existing Pelican crossing was a major problem, which required more Council School Safety vehicles (SSVs) and the mounting of pavement cameras to record illegal parking to deter persistent offenders;

·         Budget cuts had seen the local school Lollypop Lady made redundant and crossing regimes needed to be re-instituted at York Lane and West Hill, based on the successful arrangements in place for Watling Street.

 

Specific road safety measures advocated in the letter included:

 

·         A safety review of the roads around Brent primary school by Kent County Council Highways Division and Dartford Borough Council as a matter of urgency;

·         A speed limit of 20 m.p.h. be introduced on London Road from the junctions of Brent Way down to the junction of Cotton Lane;

·         A speed limit of 20 m.p.h. on St. John’s Road;

·         Speed deterrents on London Road e.g. 20 m.p.h. speed camera outside Brent school or speed bumps in front and either side of the school to slow traffic;

·         Increased road markings and street signs to warn motorists of children crossing in the vicinity of the school;

·         Yellow zig-zag lines outside the school with double yellow lines either side of the zig-zag  ...  view the full minutes text for item 19.

20.

References from other Committees (if any)

Minutes:

There were no references from other Committees for the Board to consider.

21.

Presentation from Govia Thameslink Railways - New National Railways Timetable

To receive a presentation from Yvonne Leslie, Senior Stakeholder Manager, Govia Thameslink Railway Ltd. regarding the continued implementation of the new National Railways Timetable.

Minutes:

The Chairman renewed her thanks to Yvonne Leslie, Senior Stakeholder Manager, Govia Thameslink Railways Ltd for agreeing to attend the proceedings and update the Board regarding the new National Timetable for rail companies and its impact on Thameslink services.

 

Ms Leslie expressed Govia Thameslink’s deep regret for the disruption caused to Dartford passengers following the Government’s decision to introduce a new national timetable for rail companies on 20 May 2018.

 

She gave the following background to the Government’s decision and consequent impact on the Govia Thameslink operation and service:

 

·         The new national timetable (the Timetable) had been introduced to meet rising passenger demand and the need for increased capacity, particularly in the South East of England, where Govia Thameslink was now the principal operator;

·         However, delays in the industry planning process resulted in rail companies being given only 3 weeks to implement the Timetable rather than the industry standard 12 week period required by rail companies to efficiently re-allocate drivers and undertake any additional driver training where new route knowledge was required. The compression of this 12 week period to only 3 weeks had led to acknowledged severe disruption to the Thameslink operation which the company deeply regretted;

·         Following that particularly severe disruption to Thameslink and Northern rail services following introduction of the Timetable on 20 May, the Government Office of Rail and Road (ORR) had commissioned a report to assess what had happened, the underlying causes for the severe disruption, and what recommendations should be made to the rail industry as a consequence.  The initial findings of the ORR report were due to be made available on 20 September and the full report expected to be published by December 2018;

·         Pending publication of the ORR recommendations to industry, Govia Thameslink had introduced a revised interim Timetable on 15 July to stabilise their services and provide better punctuality and reliability for customers. Performance had improved as a consequence, with 85% of Thameslink services now meeting the PPM standard (arriving within 5 minutes of booked time) in the period 12-25 August, up from only 60% of services meeting PPM for the new Timetable following introduction on 20 May 2018;

·         Govia Thameslink had also increased capacity in and out of London to meet the traditional September increase in passenger demand [post the holiday period] with the introduced of a further 2 (two) services on the Gillingham loop, and would review that additional provision further as required.

 

The Vice-Chairman asked when Govia Thameslink expected to be able to meet the full demands of its customers and improve the current level of services to an acceptable standard. He had received reports that up to 25 drivers per day had had to be re-allocated from Southeastern Rail [Govia sister company] to drive Thameslink trains under the new Timetable.

 

Ms Leslie advised that:

 

·         Thameslink’s short-fall in driver numbers to meet the scheduling requirements of the Timetable on 20 May had been as a direct result of the significantly compressed 3 week implementation period imposed on industry  ...  view the full minutes text for item 21.

22.

Update from Southeastern Railways

To receive a further update from Mr Chris Vinson, Senior External Communications Manager, Southeastern Railways following his earlier presentation to the Board on 5 June 2018.

Minutes:

In the absence of Mr Chris Vinson from Southeastern Railways due to illness, Members considered an email dated 4 September 2018 from Southeastern’s Stakeholder Engagement Manager, which updated the Board on the progress made by the company to address the various points of concern expressed by Members and residents to Mr Vinson at the last meeting of the Board on 5 June 2018 [Min. No. 9 refers].

 

                        RESOLVED:

 

1.    That Members note the contents of the email from Southeastern and advise any further, immediate concerns to the Committee Co-Ordinator for relaying to the company for response;

 

2.    That Mr. Vinson or another appropriate representative of Southeastern Railways be invited to attend the next meeting of the Board in December 2018.

 

23.

Vehicle Crossover Installations (dropped kerbs) pdf icon PDF 80 KB

That the Board consider the attached report from DBC officers and recommend to Cabinet accordingly.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The report from the Council’s Principal Transport Planning Officer outlined for the Board the current process for vehicle crossover installations (dropped kerbs) which Kent County Council (KCC) provided as a chargeable service.

 

KCC received and reviewed all applications for vehicle crossover installations (VCIs) considering a number of elements prior to approval or rejection of individual applications. However, the KCC process had negatively affected a number of parking management schemes in the Borough, resulting in the need for Traffic Regulation Order (TRO) amendment work to be undertaken.  KCC had recently stated that it would no longer provide the TRO amendment service required following approval of VCI applications by the County authority. This new KCC stance held implications for the Borough Council’s resources.

 

The Board was asked to consider those implications for Dartford Council as set out in detail in para 3.10 of the report [agenda p.23]. Based on those implications for the Council, in terms of both financial and personnel resources, the report recommended at para 3.11 that the Board advise Cabinet that:

 

 ‘The Council confirm to KCC that it is not able to resource the necessary to support the delivery of its [KCC’s] vehicle crossover installation service’.

 

This would enable KCC to develop a new VCI process for its customers.

 

In this latter context, the report also advised (para 3.12 refers) that the Council was able to assist KCC in any new VCI process by:

 

·         Confirming whether or not the loss of a ‘parking space’ (due to a dropped kerb installation) could be accommodated within an existing management scheme in the Borough, without negative impact on other residents living within that scheme; and by

·         Providing the TRO Schedule wording for KCC to complete the TRO amendment process, including required line-painting and street signage, to enable the Council to continue to administer Civil Parking Enforcement and the issue of FPNs as appropriate.

 

In subsequent discussion with Members, the following points were made by KCC’s District Manager for Dartford:

 

·         KCC charged applicants £350 for a VCI with 50% of the fee refunded if the application was unsuccessful;

·         KCC’s role in the VCI process was to undertake an on-site safety inspection to approve or reject an application - nothing else;

·         Borough/District Councils were responsible for any TRO amendments required following approval of a VCI application by KCC, with attendant costs for such work passed to the applicant;

·         KCC had no resource for TRO amendments and did not undertake them in the current process, which referred VCI applicants to the relevant District authority to ascertain and pursue any TRO amendment work required.

 

In response, and drawing on the contents of the report, the Council’s Enforcement Supervisor advised Members that:

 

·         Dartford Council was not resourced to undertake TRO amendment work in support of VCI applications [as set out in detail in para 3.10 of the report];

·         Applications for TRO amendment works from the public are referred back to KCC;

·         Unfortunately, in recent times some Dartford residents had been left with a newly installed VCI  ...  view the full minutes text for item 23.

24.

Members Enquiry Items

Members have the opportunity to raise  the following: -

 

·         Questions in relation to capital and revenue funded works programmes

·         Suggestions for future traffic regulation orders or street management proposals

·         Questions on policies, plans and strategies related to highways, road traffic and public transport.

·         Suggestion of a future agenda item (subject to the Chairman’s approval)

 

Minutes:

There were no specific enquiries raised by Members.

25.

Road Works in the Borough of Dartford pdf icon PDF 117 KB

This report informs Board Members of the roadworks which are currently being undertaken, or expected to be undertaken, within the Borough.

Minutes:

The Board received the standard quarterly report from KCC Highways which updated Members on the roadworks currently being undertaken in the Borough, or expected to be undertaken during the 2018/19 financial cycle.

 

Developer Funded Work(Appendix E to the report)

 

Mr Butler (KCC) expressed concern that some of the developer funded work listed in Appendix E did not list start dates, asked whether this was left to individual developers to set.

 

Other Members also expressed concern over the lack of detail in Appendix E and saw a need for greater dialogue between KCC and Developers over scheduled works. In particular, the need to avoid ‘toxic combinations’ of scheduled works by developers and utility companies which caused severe disruption to residents through poor planning and a lack of adequate consultation.

 

The KCC Highways Manager (West Kent) assured Members that KCC’s Street Managers, Development Managers and Contractors team meet regularly on a co-ordinated basis to take forward work schemes with developers. KCC’s Street works Managers were also in regular contacted with the relevant DBC Officers over on-going and proposed works. KCC’s Development and Emergency Works teams employed an algorithm process to develop an ideal combination of works for any given scheme.

 

Mrs Cole (KCC Member for Dartford East) advised the Board that co-ordinated working, particularly by utility companies, was not her experience. She cited a 2 year wait for gas works to be completed at the London Road/Manorway Junction which was still an outstanding issue, exacerbated by the work of Thames Water at the London Road and St. Clement’s Way. Works at Horns Cross had also proved to be a major inconvenience for `residents.

 

The Highways Manager assured Members that her Street Works teams worked as hard as possible to engage with all relevant parties over road works schemes to ensure the work was undertaken as speedily as possible with the least amount of disruption possible to road users and residents.

 

The Board noted the contents of the report.

 

26.

KCC - Environment, Highways and Waste pdf icon PDF 138 KB

For Members information the following has been attached for Members information: -

 

§    Environment, Highways and Waste Cabinet Committee – Unconfirmed (Draft) Minutes of their meetings held on 15 May and 13 July 2018.

     

        

NB: If a Member wishes to discuss any of these items at the meeting, please advise the Democratic Services Section (01322) 34376 prior to the meeting.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Board noted the Minutes of the KCC Environment & Transport Cabinet Committee meetings held on 15 May and 13 July 2018.