AT A MEETING of the WINCHESTER MOVEMENT AND ACCESS PLAN JOINT MEMBERS PANEL held at The Castle, Winchester on Thursday 6 November 2003.
Councillors: K.B. Estlin (Chairman); Mrs P.G. Peskett.
Councillors: C. Bailey; J. Beveridge; P. Davies; G. Hutton; B. Liscomb.
41. DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST
Members were mindful that, where they believed they had a personal or personal prejudicial interest in any matter to be considered at the meeting, they should, normally at the time of the debate declare their interest, and having regard to the circumstances described in paragraphs 9, 10, 11 and 12 of the County Council's Code of Conduct, consider whether to leave the meeting whilst the matter was discussed.
The Minutes of the meeting held on 4 March 2003 were confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman, subject to the addition of the word `Possible' at the beginning of part (v) of minute 38.
43. CHAIRMAN'S COMMUNICATIONS
There were no Chairman's communications.
There were no deputations.
45. LOCAL TRANSPORT PLAN - ANNUAL PROGRESS REPORT
The Panel considered the report of the Director of Environment (Item 5 in the Minute Book) updating Members on the delivery of the Local Transport Plan and the content of Hampshire County Council's third Annual Progress Report submitted to the Government Office for the South East and the Department for Transport on 31 July 2003.
During 2002/03 Hampshire County Council had spent £22.7 million on transport schemes. The Annual Progress Report set out how this money had been spent and detailed the County Council's performance in meeting targets which had been set both locally and nationally.
Winchester City Council Members reported that they had not all received copies of the Annual Progress Report and so these were distributed at the meeting. Concerns were raised that the County Council might not meet all of its transportation targets. It was reported that in several cases this was due to overambitious targets being set by the Government. It was also reported that the short term indicators used in the report did not always reflect the long term benefits of schemes, therefore in some cases the County Council were closer to meeting their targets than the figures suggested.
The Chairman informed Members that the County Council had recently won a `Bus Industry Award' for the Cango initiative. It was hoped that when sufficient resources became available this initiative could be extended to other areas of rural Hampshire..
That the performance on transport improvements as set out in the report on the Local Transport Plan Annual Progress Report and how the County Council is performing in relation to meeting its objectives and targets be noted.
46. DRAFT TRANSPORT CAPITAL PROGRAMME 2004/05 AND 2005/06 FOR CONSULTATION
The Panel considered the report of the Director of Environment (Item 6 in the Minute Book) outlining the indicative programmes for the Integrated Transport Capital Programme for 2004/05 and 2005/06.
Members were invited to comment on the priorities for the 2004/05 and 2005/06 draft programme as summarised in Appendix 4 of the report. The Chairman emphasised that the programme was a draft at this stage and was dependent upon confirmation of the Department for Transport (DfT) settlement which was due in December 2003. The draft programme had been made available for discussion by Members and would be finalised in January 2004. In response to Members questions the Chairman explained that the prioritisation of each scheme within the programme was a guide at this point in time, and comments on the priorities would be welcomed and noted.
Officers answered Members detailed questions on a number of schemes outlined in the report, including the Safer Routes to School programme. The priorities identified in the report received general approval from the Panel. Members were, however, keen to see the designs for the Romsey Road/Chilbolton Avenue traffic signal scheme drafted and consultation commenced. It was suggested that the scheme could include an extension to the current route of the of the Bar End Park and Ride scheme. Officers reported that they were already in negotiations with the Royal Hampshire County Hospital in regard to this matter. It was also suggested that the scheme could include alterations between Stanmore Lane and Pitt Roundabout to improve safety for cyclists; officers agreed to investigate this proposal.
That the Executive Member for Environment be advised that:
(i) there was a general consensus of agreement for the Draft Transport Capital Programme for 2004/05; and
(ii) any additional comments on the Draft Capital Programme from Winchester City Council be received by the County Council no later than Friday 14 November 2003.
47. REVIEW OF TRANSPORT STRATEGY AREAS AND TRANSPORTATION STRATEGY PANELS
The Panel considered the report of the Director of Environment (Item 7 in the Minute Book) reviewing the current area transportation strategy panels.
Members were invited to comment on the review of the transportation strategy panels. An additional report was circulated detailing proposals for the reorganisation of transport strategy panel arrangements which would be considered by the Executive Member for Environment on 11 November and by the County Council at its meeting on 27 November 2003. It was proposed that four new Area Transport Panels with flexible boundaries be established to cover the following sub regions; the Solent Transport area (as defined by SEERA); North East Hampshire, incorporating the Blackwater Valley and the Thames Valley sub-regions; New Forest; and the largely rural Central Hampshire area. These new panels would replace the current transportation strategy panels and would advise the Executive Member for Environment on long term strategic transport and spatial strategy issues. Additional changes were also being considered for the Highway Management Advisory Panels, potentially leading to an expansion of their terms of reference so as to cover all schemes programmed for the forthcoming year.
Members were generally in support of the proposals although some concerns were raised over the Central Hampshire Panel focusing on rural areas at the expense of issues facing Winchester City, such as air quality.
That the Executive Member for Environment be advised that:
i) the outline proposals for the review of transport strategy areas and Transportation Strategy Panels be noted and the comments made in discussion by this Panel be considered by the Executive Member for Environment and the County Council, as appropriate;
ii) copies of the report to the Executive Member for Environment on the proposals be forwarded to the relevant portfolio holders of all Hampshire District Councils; and
iii) subject to the approval of the proposals by the County Council, the Chief Executive would liaise with District Councils in due course in respect of arrangements for an inaugural meeting of each of the new Area Transport Panels.
47. PROPOSED JEWRY STREET/CITY ROAD IMPROVEMENTS SCHEME: OUTCOME OF PUBLIC CONSULTATION
The Panel considered the report of the Director of Environment (Item 8 in the Minute Book) outlining the outcome of a public consultation exercise regarding proposed improvements to Jewry Street/City Road.
Officers gave Members an overview of the consultation process and summarised its results. Concerns were raised over the possibility of implementing any scheme before the future of the current library building, and the surrounding car park, had been determined. However it was agreed that, in principle, those parts of the scheme which were unlikely to be affected by the future use of the library building could be progressed.
i) That the outcome of the public consultation on the Jewry Street/City Road proposals be noted;
ii) That Hampshire County Council and Winchester City Council produce a corporate strategy for the area prior to a decision being taken regarding elements of the programme; and
iii) That Officers identify any elements that are common to all outcomes and report back to Members in due course.
48. EASTON LANE CORRIDOR PROPOSALS
The Panel considered the report of the Director of Environment (Item 9 in the Minute Book) outlining the outcome of a consultation exercise undertaken during Spring 2003 regarding the proposals for the Easton Lane corridor.
It was reported that Easton Lane presented significant problems in that it comprised a residential area as well as retail parks and a motorway junction. Although the main principals of the scheme were generally agreed with, Members raised concerns that the proposals might adversely affect the traffic flow along Easton Lane and therefore potentially encourage motorists to use other routes less suited to large volumes of traffic. It was felt that there was a need to address problems arising from traffic travelling to and from the Winnall Industrial Estate.
Members agreed that this matter should be resolved through Executive Member to Executive Member discussion, although there may be the potential for establishing a working group to further investigate solutions to the problems of the Easton Lane corridor.
i) That the outcome of the public consultation on the Easton Lane corridor proposals be noted.
ii) That the Executive Member for Environment (Hampshire County Council) and the portfolio holder for Transport and Access (Winchester City Council) be advised to discuss this matter further with the possibility of establishing a working group to investigate a way forward.