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Palmer's Walk Consultation

Meeting: 12/01/2017 - East Area Committee (Item 38)

38 Palmer's Walk Consultation pdf icon PDF 811 KB

Minutes:

The Committee received a report presented by the Senior Assets Development Officer for Streets and Open Spaces setting out the background to and the feedback from the consultation on the proposal to widen the pathway alongside Petersfield Mansions known as Palmers Walk.  This had been raised some years ago, and a further consultation had been undertaken recently.  Two residents had also canvassed opinion on whether a cycling ban should be imposed along Palmers Walk.  It was noted that EAC would not be making any decision on the matter; the decision would be made by the Cycling and Pedestrian Steering Group at its meeting on 9th February 2017.

 

In the course of discussion, Committee members

 

·  pointed out that 58% of respondents had supported maintaining the current width of the path, so there was not a majority in favour of widening it

 

·  queried whether a ban on cycling would be practicable, and who would be responsible for enforcing it.  The Assets Development Officer said that enforcement was difficult in the absence of a byelaw or traffic regulation order (TRO). 

 

·  commented that cyclists were likely to ride on the path whether it were permitted or not.  Instead, measures to make it safer for the residents of Petersfield Mansions to leave the building should be considered, such as widening the path and putting in railings for about 30cm beyond the steps to stop cyclists riding too close to the steps.  EAC should confirm to the working party that it considered safety to be the priority in any scheme for Palmers Walk.

 

One of the residents who had requested the consultation said that any widening of the path would encourage people to go faster; they had an engineer’s diagram showing that a wider path would enable two-way cycling.  Using Palmers Walk gave a very short route saving, and there was no need to cycle it.  Since starting the campaign to reduce riding, there had been a noticeable increase in the number of people pushing instead of riding bicycles.

 

One of the petition organisers disputed the suggestion that they had been coercive when gathering signatures; they had simply wanted to widen access to the consultation exercise for elderly and infirm residents of Bradmore Court.  The Assets Development Officer said that no offence had been intended by the comment in the report; he had simply wanted to point out that time could be taken to consider the response to a consultation document through the letterbox, whereas a request to sign a petition needed an immediate answer.  There had been a 20% response rate to the consultation document from Bradmore Court residents, which was a not uncommon rate of return.

 

The Chair confirmed that the comments made would be reported to the Assets Development Officer so that he could share them with the Cycling and Pedestrian Steering Group.  Action: Anthony French