Agenda item - Emergency Active Travel Fund – Tranche 2 transport schemes and plans for consultation

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Agenda item

Emergency Active Travel Fund – Tranche 2 transport schemes and plans for consultation

Report of the Executive Director, Economy, Environment & Culture

Decision:

That the Committee:

 

1)             Agree to progress work on the five schemes presented in this report, to be delivered using Tranche 2 of the Active Travel Fund from Government.

 

2)             Approve the plan for meaningful public and stakeholder consultation on these schemes, attached at Appendix 1, prior to their implementation.

 

3)             Agree that the same plan for meaningful consultation to apply to  Tranche 1 of the active travel schemes as they relate to the A259 seafront and A 270 Old Shoreham Road cycle lanes, as set out in paragraph 6.7, with the outcome of the specific consultation on those schemes informing any future decisions.

 

4)             Agree the proposed terms of reference for a new Active & Inclusive Travel Forum to facilitate positive and proactive discussion amongst key stakeholders on schemes and initiatives that support active and accessible travel for all and enable inclusive user experiences to inform future proposals.

 

5)             Agree that reports summarising the deliberations of the Active & Inclusive Travel Forum be brought back to this committee on a regular basis.

 

6)             Note the use of urgency powers in accordance with the Council’s Standing Orders in August 2020 in relation to the temporary A259 cycle lane.

Minutes:

56.1      The Committee considered a report of the Executive Director, Economy, Environment & Culture hat outlined proposals for further temporary and permanent active travel measures to be implemented under the Emergency Active Travel Fund Tranche 2 and sought approval for meaningful consultation on those proposals to be undertaken.

 

56.2      In response to questions from Councillor Wares, it was explained that Old Shoreham Road temporary cycle land was not mentioned at paragraph 3.3 of the report as it was not funded using the Emergency Active Travel Fund Tranche 1 scheme. In relation to moving funding for Marine Parade and Madeira Drive, copies of correspondence and authorisation from the DfT to do so could be made available to Members subsequent to the meeting. Furthermore, DfT had provided approval for schemes to be undertaken using Experimental Traffic Regulation Orders (ETRO’s).

 

56.3      In response to questions from Councillor Allcock, it was clarified that City Transport would co-ordinate the consultations of which there would be four strands. In terms of expertise used, the DfT were in the process of establishing Active Travel England that would oversee, scrutinise, advise and support Active Travel Fund applications, schemes and consultations and in the interim, DfT would be providing advice. The Active & Inclusive Travel Forum would have a broad a membership as possible including those that did not use active travel. The baseline scheme data that had been used and would continue to be used would be wide-ranging and include cycle counts, vehicle monitors and walking data and there was a requirement that data be reported to the DfT.

 

56.4      In answer to questions raised by Councillor Appich, it was clarified that the survey results would be reported back to the committee and there was a requirement that the headline results be reported to the DfT by the end of March 2021. Survey information leaflets would first be distributed to directly affected properties directly affected by the proposed schemes selected on local knowledge and data from council officers with extensive experience in conducting consultation exercises. A second survey leaflet circulation would then go to a wider audience and there would be further consultation activity with a broader audience of those who lived, worked or visited the city and wanted to have their say.

 

56.5      In response to question from Councillor Wilkinson, it was clarified that the criteria for new cycle routes was prioritised on directness, the same as for vehicles that was in line with recent government guidance. In terms of the public feedback on Tranche 1 schemes, the results would be report reported to a future committee.

 

56.6      In response to questions from Councillor Fowler, it was explained that a requirement of the Tranche funding was that cycle lane width comply with LTN (1/20) cycle infrastructure guidance. The consultation was designed to garner broad responses from a wide range of people and a there would be a requirement for personal details such as name and address to avoid multiple submissions.

 

56.7      In response to a question from Councillor Brown, it was clarified that the long term ambition was to remove the pavement cycle lane on the seafront however, that would be conditional on protected and proper facilities being in place on the adjacent road rather than the temporary measures that were currently in place.

 

56.8      In response to questions from Councillor Wares, it was explained that officers were continually collating data on Tranche 1 schemes and that could be made available at any point and as previously stated, would be reported to a future meeting of the committee. Officer were aware that a postcard had been sent to all of the city’s residents relating to the UK’s exit from the European Union however, such methods were not deemed necessary for this survey and it was believed that methods proposed were sufficient and would be effective. In relation to those residents that may not have access to digital services, the survey would be highlighted and broadcast through the wide variety of stakeholder groups and community groups as well as public consultation sessions and meetings. It was explained that Old Shoreham Road cycle lane was not part of the Tranche 1 schemes and the paragraph referenced by Councillor Wares referred that final adjustments had made to the Old Shoreham Road design during the Tranche 1 phase. Further, it was clarified that whilst there was a good deal of co-working on strategic matters, Transport for the South East (TfSE) did not intervene with other local authorities’ business so there had not been any liaison with TfSE on this matter.

 

56.9      Councillor Wares requested that the survey leaflet be posted to every resident in the city.

 

56.10   The Executive Director, Economy Environment & Culture stated that the report detailed a very comprehensive plan that was appropriate for what was being proposed however, it was for the Committee to determine whether they agreed with the approach or not.

 

56.11   Councillor Wilkinson moved a motion on behalf of the Labour Group to amend the recommendations as shown in bold italics and where struck through below:

          That the Committee:

2.1     Agree to progress work on the five schemes presented in this report, to be delivered using Tranche 2 of the Active Travel Fund from Government.

2.2     Approve the plan for meaningful public and stakeholder consultation on these schemes, attached at Appendix 1, prior to their implementation.

2.3      Agree the same plan for meaningful consultation to apply to  Tranche 1 of the active travel schemes as they relate to the A259 seafront and A 270 Old Shoreham Road cycle lanes, as set out in paragraph 6.7, with the outcome of the specific consultation on those schemes informing any future decisions.

2.34   Agree the proposed terms of reference for a new Active & Inclusive Travel Forum to facilitate positive and proactive discussion amongst key stakeholders on schemes and initiatives that support active and accessible travel for all and enable inclusive user experiences to inform future proposals.

2.5      Agree that reports summarising the deliberations of the Active & Inclusive Travel Forum be brought back to this committee on a regular basis.

2.46     Note the use of urgency powers in accordance with the Council’s Standing Orders in August 2020 in relation to the temporary A259 cycle lane.

 

56.12   Introducing the amendment, Councillor Wilkinson stated that the consultation plan was robust, and the amendment sought to strengthen the consultation by consulting on the A259 seafront and A270 Old Shoreham Road cycle lanes Tranche 1 schemes too.

 

56.13   Councillor Appich formally seconded the motion and stated that it was very important to have a meaningful consultation on the A259 seafront and A270 Old Shoreham Road cycle lanes and that the committee receive updates from the Active & Inclusive Travel Forum to ensure it had a prominent voice.

 

56.14   Councillor Wares moved a motion on behalf of the Conservative Group to amend the recommendations as shown in bold italics and where struck through below:

 

That the Committee:

 

2.1      Agree to progress work on the five schemes presented in this report subject to the outcome of the consultation in 2.3, 2.4 and 2.5 and further approval by this Committee on the detailed designs, to be delivered using Tranche 2 of the Active Travel Fund from Government.

 

2.2      Request a detailed cost breakdown be provided to January’s ETS Committee showing expenditure of the Tranche 1 funds noting that the scheme to reopen Madeira Drive approved in September was to be funded by Tranche 1 but is now to be funded by Tranche 2.

 

2.23    Approve the plan for meaningful public and stakeholder consultation on these schemes, attached at Appendix 1, prior to their implementationand further agree that Madeira Drive will be subject to the same consultation process as the other four schemes referred to in recommendation 2.1 as a result of changes to Madeira Drive now being funded by Tranche 2.

 

2.4      Agree that all consultations, questionnaires, surveys and the like to be undertaken as part of recommendation 2.3 include a simple binary question asking if the respondent supports the scheme or not.

 

2.5      Agree that any scheme that is not supported by the public following the consultation in 2.3 will not be progressed.

 

2.36    Agree the proposed terms of reference for a new Active & Inclusive Travel Forum to facilitate positive and proactive discussion amongst key stakeholders on schemes and initiatives that support active and accessible travel for all and enable inclusive user experiences to inform future proposals.

 

2.7      Request a proposal for approval be provided for January’s ETS Committee detailing the selection and qualifying criteria to be used to assess membership of the Active & Inclusive Travel Forum detailed in 2.6.

 

2.48    Note the use of urgency powers in accordance with the Council’s Standing Orders in August 2020 in relation to the temporary A259 cycle lane

 

56.15   Introducing the motion, Councillor Wares stated that it was vitally important and democratic that the committee receive the consultation results and decide upon how to proceed accordingly. Councillor Wares added that it was similarly vital that the spending on Tranche 1 and Tranche 2 be transparent and clear and that the new proposals for Madeira Drive be consulted upon. Further, Councillor Wares stated that residents be given a clear yes/no option on the proposals, so the consultation result were not open to misinterpretation.

 

56.16   Councillor Brown formally seconded the motion stating that the motion ensured that the council would act in an open and transparent manner and so residents knew how the funding was being spent.

 

56.17   Councillor Lloyd stated that the city was currently dangerous to cycle through and residents had never been given opportunity to formally provide their view on the status quo namely, whether the city was dominated by the vehicle. Councillor Lloyd stated that the funding had been awarded so it was entirely appropriate that a consultation was undertaken and not a referendum as proposed in the Conservative Group motion. Councillor Lloyd stated that there was objection to the Old Shoreham Road cycle lane but there was also a great deal of support, particularly from parents and their children who could now cycle to their local school.

 

56.18   Councillor Hills welcomed the report and spoke in support of the schemes going ahead. Councillor Hills added that any major changes to the travel network required a period of adjustment and that was precisely what was required for the proposals in Brighton & Hove. Councillor Hills stated that she would be voting against the Conservative Group motion as a key request from the Government was that the consultation facilitate meaningful input and a binary choice would not achieve this. Councillor Hills added that she would be supporting the Labour Group motion as it made helpful improvements to the recommendations.

 

56.19   Councillor Davis stated his disapproval of the media fuelled culture war against the cyclist that provided a distorted version of reality. Councillor Davis stated that if residents were to be encouraged to move to more sustainable and cleaner methods of transport then the infrastructure to do that had to be made available. Councillor Davis stated that he agreed with the recommendations and enhancements made by the Labour Group motion so would not be voting for the Conservative Group motion.

 

56.20   Councillor Wares stated that he believed that the Labour Group and Green Group “coalition” would ensure the schemes would be implemented and the consultation was a meaningless exercise. Councillor Wares stated that he similarly wanted cleaner air and cleaner streets but schemes had to be introduced in a logical manner and that was simply not the case in the proposals before the committee and in the allocation of Tranche 1 funding.

 

56.21   Councillor Wilkinson welcomed the report and the opportunity to undertake a robust and meaningful consultation on improvements to active travel that were urgently needed in the city.

 

56.22   The Chair then put the Labour Group motion to the vote that passed.

 

56.23   The Chair then put the Conservative Group motion to the vote that failed.

 

56.24   The Chair then put the recommendations as amended to the vote that were agreed.

 

56.25   A recorded vote was not undertaken however, Councillor Wares request that the official record reflect that the Councillor Brown and Councillor Wares voted in support of recommendations 2.5 and 2.6 as amended and voted against recommendations 2.1, 2.2, 2.3 and 2.4.

 

56.26   RESOLVED- That the Committee:

 

1)             Agree to progress work on the five schemes presented in this report, to be delivered using Tranche 2 of the Active Travel Fund from Government.

 

2)             Approve the plan for meaningful public and stakeholder consultation on these schemes, attached at Appendix 1, prior to their implementation.

 

3)             Agree that the same plan for meaningful consultation to apply to  Tranche 1 of the active travel schemes as they relate to the A259 seafront and A 270 Old Shoreham Road cycle lanes, as set out in paragraph 6.7, with the outcome of the specific consultation on those schemes informing any future decisions.

 

4)             Agree the proposed terms of reference for a new Active & Inclusive Travel Forum to facilitate positive and proactive discussion amongst key stakeholders on schemes and initiatives that support active and accessible travel for all and enable inclusive user experiences to inform future proposals.

 

5)             Agree that reports summarising the deliberations of the Active & Inclusive Travel Forum be brought back to this committee on a regular basis.

 

6)             Note the use of urgency powers in accordance with the Council’s Standing Orders in August 2020 in relation to the temporary A259 cycle lane.

Supporting documents:

 


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