Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council

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Appeals & Complaints Committee Minutes

Date:
Wednesday, 2nd December, 2015
Time:
1.30 pm
Place:
Jim Cooke Conference Suite, Stockton Central Library, Stockton on Tees, TS18 1TU
 
Please note: all Minutes are subject to approval at the next Meeting

Attendance Details

Present:
Cllr David Wilburn(Chairman), Cllr Sonia Bailey( Sub Cllr Tracey Stott), Cllr Derrick Brown, Cllr Evaline Cunningham, Cllr Maurice Perry(Sub Cllr Philip Dennis), Cllr Elsi Hampton, Cllr Ross Patterson
Officers:
Mark Gillson(DNS), Julie Butcher, Sarah Whaley(LD)
Apologies for absence:
Cllr Phil Dennis, Cllr Tracey Stott
Item Description Decision
Public
ACC
6/15
EVACUATION PROCEDURE
 
ACC
7/15
DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST
 
ACC
8/15
PROCEDURE
RESOLVED that the procedure be agreed.
ACC
9/15
MINUTES FROM THE MEETING WHICH WAS HELD ON THE 17TH JULY 2015.
RESOLVED that the minutes be approved and signed as a correct record by the Chairman.
ACC
10/15
PROPOSED PARKING RESTRICTIONS - HIGH STREET, NORTON
RESOLVED that:

1) The Head of Economic Growth and Development be recommended not to uphold the objection.

2) Local Ward Councillors, Norton Village Residents Association and the objectors be informed of the Committee's recommendation.
1.30pm

Preamble

ItemPreamble
ACC
6/15
The Evacuation Procedure was noted.
ACC
7/15
There were no declarations s of interest.
ACC
8/15
The Committee considered and agreed a proposed procedure for the meeting, which the Chairman explained ahead of the following item.
ACC
9/15
Consideration was given to the minutes from the meeting which was held on the 17th July 2015 for approval and signature.
ACC
10/15
Members were provided with a report relating to outstanding objections' received, following statutory advertising of a Traffic Regulation Order for proposed parking restrictions in High Street and Harland Place, Norton.

An Officer from Economic Growth and Development Services was in attendance and presented the report.

Members were provided with background information and it was explained that in 2011 a Borough wide parking study was undertaken. Norton was identified as an area for assessment. The Central Area Transport Strategy (ATS) Group whose members were local transport stakeholders had been given an annual budget allocation to spend on transport priorities in their particular area. Stakeholders included Ward Councillors and Norton Village Residents Association. The Central ATS Group approved a study into parking in Norton given the perceived parking issues in the area and to investigate the feasibility of introducing pedestrian crossing facilities at Leven Road.

Information received from Norton Village Residents Association (NVRA) demonstrated that the main concern was obstructive and indiscriminate parking for both residents and businesses. Introducing limited waiting and no waiting restrictions that could be enforced could reduce the impact of such parking.

On-street parking surveys had been undertaken which indicated that there was high use and turnover throughout the day along the east and west side of the High Street carriageway. Three areas had been identified as potential 2 hour limited waiting areas:

- The existing car park close to the amenities, adjacent to 4-10 High Street;

- The uncontrolled area adjacent to 8-12 Harland Place;

- An increase to the duration of stay to 2 hours in Leven Road was proposed to allow a more consistent approach.

It was also proposed to formalise the Keep Clear restriction on the west side service road (Fox Alms Houses) to no waiting at anytime restrictions, to allow regular access and stop obstructive parking.

An exhibition and drop in session was carried out in Norton Library. The drop in session was well attended. It was noted that there had been 91% in support of the 2 hour limited waiting on the High Street and 85% in support of the 2 hour limited waiting at Harland Place. A full summary of the results were contained within the main report.

As a result of the exhibition and drop in session the following suggestions were made and had been incorporated into the scheme as follows:

- Introduce an evening Taxi Rank in the west side service road from 47 to 53 High Street the proposed operating times would be 8pm to 4am.

- A bollard to be installed at the puffin crossing next to Norton Fisheries.

- Additional Keep Clear markings and hatching to assist vehicles exiting service roads along the length of the High Street.

Authorisation to advertise the proposed Traffic Regulation Order in Norton High Street as per drawing TM14/124 in Appendix 1 of the report was subsequently given in June 2014 (decision record TS.T.38.14).

Statutory advertising ran from 8 July 2015 until 5 August 2015 during which time the Council formally received 3 objections opposed to the 2 hour Limited Waiting on parking in the existing car park adjacent to 4-10 High Street and from 8-10 Harland Place. Copies of all correspondence exchanged was provided.

A copy of the objection letters were contained alongside the main report from Ms Duell, Ms Clancy and Mrs Smith. The letters and draft report were presented to the Head of Economic Growth & Development Services and Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Transport at their de-brief meeting on 15 October 2015.

A summary of the objections and response from the Head of Economic Growth and Development services was set out at Appendix 5 of the report as seen by Members.

The Objectors were not in attendance at the meeting to make representation to the Committee, however further correspondence had been received from Ms Duell, the detail of which was provided to Members for consideration.

The police and emergency services had no objections to the proposals. Local Ward Councilors' had previously been consulted and no formal comments had been received. Scheme approval had been given by the Head of Economic Growth and Development Services in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Transport.

The Committee, in the presence of Officers from Law and Democracy, considered its decision taking into account all of the written information within the report and that which was provided at the meeting. Their comments could be summarised as follows:

- Concerns were raised regarding the displacement of parking to nearby residential streets. The Principal Engineer explained to Members that the proposals would be introduced in 3 phases. If there was evidence that there was issues with Long Stay parking in residential areas then this could be looked at and if required the appropriate action would be taken.

- Members discussed whether any local residents would be affected by the new scheme. It was explained that although there were residents living above Harland Place no formal objections had been received.

- Brief discussion took place around the changes which were to take place close to café Lilli which comprised of clearer marking and hatching to define car parking spaces. No additional restrictions were to be imposed.

- It was confirmed that the main body of the high street would not be affected.

- Clarity was sought as to whether the service road close to the local Tesco store would be affected by the 2 hour restriction. Officers confirmed that this was subject to 2 hour limited waiting and was marked and plated as such.

- Members went on to discuss the newly proposed taxi rank which had been added as a result of the consultation exercise. The Evening economy had taken off in Norton and it was clear that there was a demand for a taxi rank, although this had yet to be established. The operating hours would be from 8.00pm until 4.00am. The rank was still available for parking outside of the operating hours with a 2 hour restriction.

- It was confirmed that 25 spaces would be affected by the 2 hour waiting restrictions however there was evidence which indicated that some of these spaces were being used for 7 hours or more by individual car owners. Members commented that as parking was a scarce resource in Norton it was not fair that some people were using the spaces for such a long time.

- Members briefly considered if anything could be done about the positioning of some of the bays in the High Street. Some cars were so big that they overhung the pavements making it difficult for pedestrians. Likewise some vehicles were overhanging the highway making it difficult for traffic to pass, especially buses. Members queried whether the bays could be re marked at an angle to try to eliminate the hangover problems however it was explained that getting in and out of the spaces could present a worse problem. A request was made to confirm that the carriageway was at least 6.7 metres wide.

- Officers informed the Committee that the High Street was in a conservation area and due to the historical situation, where parking was concerned, Officers had tried to make the best of the situation. If vehicles were parked beyond the extent of the marked bays then this could be looked at.

- Members asked if consideration could be given to turning the bays so the cars parked end to end. It was explained that if this was introduced then a large number of spaces would be lost. This issue was not part of the proposed order but Officers agreed to look at it.

- Comparisons were made to Yarm High Street where a recent pay and display scheme had been introduced and which had proved to be extremely successful for local businesses. The scheme had enabled more parking spaces to become frequently available during the day. Prior to the scheme more than 60% of the spaces were occupied for most of the working day making it difficult for shoppers. It was felt that the same principles should be transferred to Norton with the hope it too benefitted from the same success.

- The consultation had received overwhelming support and all objections received had been addressed.

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