Oct 2017 - Cabot eNews
October's edition of Cabot eNews.
In this edition: _________________ 1. RPZ reviews: consultation results 2. RPZ: Proposed extension around Brandon Hill 3. Metrobus update 4. Another Chief Exec resigns from Council... 5. Proposed improvements to A4 Anchor Road/Hotwell Road 6. St Mary's Hospital latest plans 7. Broadmead expansion plans 8. Triangle bar rejected 9. Jacobs Wells Road zebra crossing 10. Clamp down on illegal disabled parking 11. Clean up Bristol harbour 12. Autumn litter Blitz 13. FrANC Annual General Meeting 14. Bristol Harbourside Monday morning social running 15. Local exhibitions _________________ 1. RPZ reviews: consultation results Ward councillors have been shown the results of the summer RPZ consultations and asked for our input towards the final decision. All of the other RPZ schemes in the city had clear majority support for one of the options, apart from the Cliftonwood & Hotwells (C&H) and Spike Island (SI) schemes, which both had finely balanced returns with no clearly preferred option of hours and days. (Typical!) This means, unfortunately, that whatever my advice to the Council, and whatever the Council chooses to do, it will likely upset plenty of people. For the C&H scheme, in a shock result the most common response was for a reduction from the current scheme to just 9-5pm Mon-Fri operation; although in days of operation this was an extremely finely balanced result, with more people cumulatively wanting other longer options. However, the Council has indicated that it will not consider any options that *reduce* the hours of operation. I am not minded to object to that decision by the Council, mostly because the breakdown shows most residents in my Hotwells and Harbourside ward part of the scheme didn't actually want a reduction. Therefore I recommended to the Council that the C&H scheme keep the current operating hours/days (the only other option being an increase), and the two Clifton councillors recommended the same. For the SI scheme, the results are the most finely balanced of any result in the city - and no combination of hours or days of operation scored a majority of responses. The most common response supports keeping the hours the same as now (9-5pm) but going to 7 days per week, but that is only narrowly the case. Confusingly, this result is different to that given in the autumn 2016 consultation to the same question! However, the numbers also show that the "centre of gravity" or "least unpopular" option for SI would actually be to extend both hours and days from the current to 9-7pm and Mon-Sat. Not only do I believe this would please more people overall, but a large number of residents have told me their specific problem was the inability to park when they get home from work because the scheme has already ended for the day. It would also prevent serious harm being done to some of the harbour leisure/business venues if the entire weekend's parking was blocked off for use by residents only. Finally, going to 9-7pm and Mon-Sat operation would also make the scheme match up exactly with the C&H scheme, which I think would be of very significant benefit. Therefore, my recommendation to Transport was for both schemes to be 9-7pm and Mon-Sat operation. I will report back when the Council announces its decision. _________________ 2. RPZ: Proposed extension around Brandon Hill A couple of years ago now, under the previous administration, the Council consulted some streets around Brandon Hill (Berkeley Place, Burton Court, Jacobs Wells Rd [part of], Lower Clifton Hill [part of], Brandon Steep, Queens Parade, St Georges Road, York Place) on moving them into the C&H RPZ scheme. The response was positive, and as recently as early summer, the Transport Department told me it was intending to do this change this year. Now the Council has said it won't now be doing this change, although it may reconsider it again in future. I'm very annoyed about this (and I know residents will be too), as this boundary change was agreed long before the change of administration and subsequent RPZ reviews. The boundary change was also intended to solve particular problems afflicting the shops/businesses on St Georges Rd, and I have asked what mitigations there will be in that regard now. _________________ 3. Metrobus update Notable Metrobus Dates (should be taken with pinch of salt) October: * M32 southbound bus lane opens * Guided Busway work completes * Bedminster Parade work completes * City Centre work completes November: * Cumberland Road work completes * Unveiling of brand, logos, buses, iPoint ticket machines * iPoint ticket machine installation begins January: * MetroBus services expected to start The Council says that the delay for the start from November till January is due to the new ticket machines: http://tinyurl.com/ycwe32sk A reminder of last month's news, which is that the 506 shuttle will continue until Metrobus starts. The contract is flexible to allow it to extend if necessary, although the drivers themselves may not know the finish date. Shuttle timetable: http://tinyurl.com/ybqvd7k3 _________________ 4. Another Chief Exec resigns from Council... In a shock, Bristol Council has lost its third Chief Executive (CX) in 16 months: http://tinyurl.com/y8kpvtp5 It is now openly suggested that the Council is in crisis, having lost 17 senior officers in those 16 months: http://tinyurl.com/ybgs2yvm As a result, the Mayor has decided to simply abolish the CX post, to save money. This is a controversial move that few Councils try, and the Labour Party last tried this in 1999-2002, which ended when the Audit Commission rated the Council "weak" as the city dropped to the bottom of nearly every performance league table in the country. If that wasn't bad enough, the new directors will now earn even more than the CX would have! I don't know whether to laugh or cry... http://tinyurl.com/y92fghrp _________________ 5. Proposed improvements to A4 Anchor Road/Hotwell Road Having examined consultation feedback, the Council is now planning to commence the statutory consultation towards the end of November. There are some tweaks to the planned bus lanes, but mostly the plans will remain unchanged. Subject to the outcome of the statutory consultation process, works on the remaining elements of the scheme are currently planned to start in February 2018. The report is now available on the Consultation Hub: www.bristol.gov.uk/consultation _________________ 6. St Mary's Hospital latest plans The latest set of plans for this site is an improvement on previous schemes. The retention of the historic hospital building and the reduction in scale are all very welcome. I have continuing concerns about the "pavilion" - the 3 storey block in the south-west of the site - and have told the developers this. The siting of a new build block in this spot has major impact on the residents of Byron Place and Upper Berkeley Place, and any building here should be moved back and/or stepped-up away from those houses to limit the amount of overlooking from the higher storeys, and construction mass, in the vicinity of the retaining wall. _________________ 7. Broadmead expansion plans Residents may be aware of a controversial plan to expand part of Broadmead with a big new car park that would be accessed via the picturesque Brunswick Square. At the planning meeting in September, I successfully passed an amendment to the planning officer recommendation, which was "The planning committee considers car park access via Brunswick Square to be unacceptable; and therefore the proposed car park should be reduced, and possibly moved, or totally eliminated, to allow a more sensitive alternate solution." The final decision will be made in a few months when the plans have been revised. _________________ 8. Triangle bar rejected At a planning committee in October I proposed a vote to reject plans to convert a shop/cafe on Queens Road into a bar/restaurant, and was happy that this vote was carried. This area already has too many bars and is blighted by night-time noise and disturbance. _________________ 9. Jacobs Wells Road zebra crossing The Council has considered the consultation results on this zebra crossing. Transport officers remain of the opinion that the proposed Zebra pedestrian crossing is necessary, and both I and the Clifton councillors agree with this. As a result of issues raised during consultation, some changes were made, including the use of halos on the zebra crossing will be incorporated into the lighting design - to prevent distraction to nearby residences. _________________ 10. Clamp down on illegal disabled parking The Council, supported by the Police, is clamping down on misuse of Blue Badges (disabled person's parking badge) in the city centre. Bristol residents are encouraged to make sure that they are aware of the rules and laws surrounding the entitlement and use of Blue Badges. A comprehensive list of rules about the scheme, which helps disabled people park closer to their destination, can be found at www.bristol.gov.uk/parking/where-you-can-park _________________ 11. Clean up Bristol harbour On Sunday 15th October I joined about 30 volunteers to help clean up the harbour, both on water and on the quayside. Numerous bags of discarded waste were picked up or fished out of the water. Plastic bottles and bags, cans and glass, and of course this time of year there is lots of wood and other plant material. If you want to help, you can come to their next one: Sunday 19th November, 2.30pm-4.30pm, meet by the Arnolfini pontoon next to Prince St Bridge. More info: www.facebook.com/CleanUpBristolHarbour _________________ 12. Autumn litter Blitz Have you ever thought of getting together with your neighbours, family or friends to do a community litter pick? 16th to 29th October is a "litter blitz" in the city. Bristol Waste Company have all the things you will need to do one safely. They can loan you litter pickers, bags, high visibility jackets and will even arrange to collect the waste you collect for free. For more info, call 304 9022 or go to: www.bristolwastecompany.co.uk/litterpick _________________ 13. FrANC Annual General Meeting Friend of Avon New Cut are holding their AGM to elect committee positions. It is Sunday 5th November, at the Education & Meeting Room at The Underfall Yard, Cumberland Road, BS1 6XG; from 2:00pm to 3:00pm. Details about this event and other FrANC events that are being organised for the remainder of this year can be found in the News & Events/Latest News section of the FrANC Website: www.franc.org.uk _________________ 14. Bristol Harbourside Monday Morning Social Running Run with "Better on a Monday" - led by local runners, the run is open to all abilities and perfect for those looking for some daytime social running. It's not competitive - no one is left behind. Weekly on Mondays 9.30am, join them on the harbourside at Mardyke Steps across from The Mardyke pub, at 9:25 for a 9:30 start. The run lasts for about an hour finishing roughly around 10.30. Running will be mainly on road on the harbourside circuit, towpath and Ashton Court. More: www.facebook.com/groups/1063822010418913 _________________ 15. Local exhibitions * Kim Yong-Ik, "I Believe My Works Are Still Valid" - Spike Island and Korean Cultural Centre UK present partner exhibitions by South Korean artist Kim Yong-Ik (b.1947), the artist's first solo presentations in Europe. Exhibition continues to 17 December at Spike Island _________________