Report of the Director of the Department of the Built Environment.
The Committee considered a report of the Director of the Built Environment recommending the adoption of the City Cluster Vision, which is a framework for the transformation of the streets and spaces over the next ten years, in order to successfully manage the projected growth within the Cluster.
Officers reported that this was intended as a companion document to the Transport Strategy. Members were informed that the public consultation had attracted a good response rate and that the £3,25 million grant secured from TfL demonstrated the level of confidence placed in the City.
A Member suggested that the Cluster might be an appropriate area in which to trial no moving vehicles with a view to closing Leadenhall Street to vehicles by 2024. He referred to the scheme at Lime Street which had given priority to pedestrian users and had proved to be an overwhelming success.
A Member stated that the timing of the developments that this Committee had already approved to date would be key in terms of implementing the Vision and suggested that the two should therefore be clearly linked. He went on to state that whilst specific railway stations were referred to within the document, it was important not to lose sight of others such as London Bridge which had a dangerous junction situated nearby.
The Deputy Chairman referred to recent consultation and discussion with the City Property Association (CPA) and highlighted that questions around the future identity of the area had been raised. He questioned whether the Committee had any strong views on this beyond referring to the area as the City/Eastern Cluster. Officers reported that they had invited views on this as part of the consultation but that no great consensus was reached.
A Member stated that he had concerns regarding utility works and stressed that it would be important to co-ordinate with relevant providers in the delivery of this Vision and feed into their works where possible. Officers agreed that this was an important point to bear in mind in taking the Vison forward.
The Chairman added that there should also be ongoing dialogue with developers regarding likely occupation of buildings and plans around streetscaping to ensure that interests were aligned in terms of success, comfort levels and the like.
In response to a question regarding the security and safety of the wider City and how this might be incorporated in to the Vision, Officers reported that Road Safety was dealt with in some detail within the Transport Strategy and that operational security was something that Officers were keen to look at in more detail. Members were also informed that developers provided a sum of money to fund area wide security.
RESOLVED – That Members:
· Note the responses to the public consultation exercise and the related changes to the document;
· Adopt the City Cluster Vision as a framework for the transformation of the streets and public realm in the area over the next 10 years;
· Agree that the underspend of £89,896 from S106 monies be considered as part of a forthcoming report for the allocation of remaining S106 funds.