Agenda and draft minutes

Venue: Livery Hall - Guildhall

Items
No. Item

1.

Apologies

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Anthony Fitzpatrick, Martha Grekos, Antony Manchester, Ian Seaton, Alethea Silk and William Upton KC.

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 1.

2.

Members' Declarations under the Code of Conduct in respect of items on the agenda

Minutes:

There were no declarations.

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 2.

3.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 183 KB

To agree the public minutes and summary of the meeting held on 20th September 2022.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 3.

Minutes:

The Committee considered the public minutes of the meeting held on 20 September 2022 and approved them as a correct record.

 

MATTERS ARISING

Traffic Order Review (page 7) – A Member commented that he did not feel that the minute here gave sufficient weight to the fact that some Members had stressed that it was important not to lose sight of what this was fundamentally about and the importance of some discussion amongst senior members on the matter before it was formally presented to the full Court next week to ensure that the focus at this juncture was correct.

 

He went on to refer to recent press coverage this week on the Taxi Drivers’ Survey which had suggested that between 60-80% black taxi drivers intended to completely avoid Bank Junction and to avoid coming to the City and Bishopsgate because of the previous complications. The Member stated that, in portraying the review as an enormous, 700 item piece of work, two fundamental points were being missed – firstly around Destination City which was all about injecting life back into the City and secondly the matter of black cabs not being treated as public transport and the consequence of this. 

 

Public Lift Report  (page 11) – A Member thanked the City Surveyor for having provided her with details of those other lifts/escalators within the City that were not currently captured within the public lift report  (four in total – 200 Aldersgate 1 London Wall, London Wall Place and 125 London Wall). The Member went on to state that she was keen to receive an update on these and, moving forwards, they be included in the public lift report. The City Surveyor responded to clarify that details of these lifts which were leased to and maintained by others would also be

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 3.

4.

Approval of draft revised Statement of Community Involvement and Developer Engagement Guidance for public consultation pdf icon PDF 131 KB

Report of the Planning and Development Director.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 4.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee considered a report of the Planning & Development Director seeking approval for the Statement of Community Involvement (SCI) and the Developer Engagement Guidance for public consultation.

 

Officers began by speaking on the Statement of Community Involvement, highlighting that this was a document setting out how the City Corporation will consult and engage with its various stakeholders including residents, development, community, businesses, workers and others on planning matters (policies, applications and other consents). The intention was that the document should set out what these stakeholders could expect from the Corporation in terms of the baseline of the consultation that the organisation would carry out.  It was highlighted that the SCI was a statutory document with the requirement to produce and keep this up to date by reviewing it every five years set out in primary legislation. It was recognised that there was now no requirement to consult on the SCI, however, Officers were of the view that consultation was critical in order to gauge how stakeholders wanted to be consulted and what they might want.

 

The Committee were informed that, as a result of the pandemic and various lockdowns, the City’s existing SCI was now over five years old and that it was therefore timely to now consult on this effectively. Officers went on to underline that there had been lots of lessons learned previously that could be factored into this iteration of the document. For example, they had observed that putting more information online, streaming meetings through YouTube and using different forms of communication had made decisions of this Committee much more visible and enabled many to better understand how decisions were made and galvanised them to want to get more involved in planning and planning matters. Members were informed that the intention was to ensure that this was

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 4.

5.

Business Plans 2022/23: Progress Report (Period 1, April-July)* pdf icon PDF 207 KB

Report of the Executive Director, Environment.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 5.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee received a report of the Executive Director, Environment providing an update on progress made during Period One (April-July) 2022/23 against the High-Level Business Plan 2022/23 for the service areas of the Environment Department which fall within their remit.

 

A budget monitoring update was also included in the report.

 

A Member noted that a lot of the underspend reported here was as a result of posts not being filled and questioned the impact of this on workloads and what, if anything, was not being delivered to programme as a result. The Chief Planning & Development Director reported that it was a very fluid situation in terms of planning and development workforce across London with frequent turnover of staff in various authorities. The City’s planning team had recently had a number of retirements and seen various staff move on to other authorities. Members were assured that it was intended that all of these posts would be filled and that there was a very vigorous recruitment campaign underway at present to recruit into and backfill any vacancies as well as new posts created as a result of the Target Operating Model. Officers reported that recruitment was going well but that there were some specialisms such as sustainability and transport planning where they were seeking to recruit within a very competitive market. It was anticipated that the underspend relating to vacant posts would close within the next three to four months as posts were filled. It was reported that there had been no impact upon the pace, quality or deliverability of planning projects and applications as a result of posts remaining unfilled.

 

A Member noted the 99.18% compliance with the Bank on Safety Road Danger Reduction Team reported here and commented that this was exceptional. She added that Members of the Port Health

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.

6.

Risk Management Update Report* pdf icon PDF 132 KB

Report of the Executive Director, Environment.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 6.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee considered a report of the Executive Director, Environment providing them with assurance that risk management procedures in place within the Environment Department are satisfactory and that they meet the requirements of the corporate Risk Management Framework.

 

The Committee considered the key risks managed by the service areas of the Environment Department which fall within their remit.

 

RESOLVED -  That Members note the report and the actions being taken by the Environment Department to monitor, mitigate and effectively manage risks arising from their operations.

 

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 6.

7.

Public Lift Report* pdf icon PDF 187 KB

Report of the City Surveyor.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 7.

Minutes:

The Committee considered a public lift report of the City Surveyor.

 

A Member reiterated the point that the statistics provided within the report on lift operation did not seem to accord with their own experiences. He therefore encouraged Members to take note of instances when they were aware of any lifts that were out of operation and to report this to Officers, perhaps via a separate, dedicated email address, so that this could be monitored and compared with the data provided here going forward. Another Member suggested that use of technology and the installation of webcams and the like might be more helpful and less labour intensive for this purpose going forward.

 

Another Member stated that the statistics as to outages frequently presented here were reprehensible and questioned why more robust repairs were not being undertaken in response to this.

 

A Member commented that future redevelopments near the riverside really ought to consider level access given the frequent failure of lifts such as those at Blackfriars Bridge and to effectively design out these expensive problems.

 

The City Surveyor reported that the statistics within the report were being by automatic monitoring taking place on the lifts maintained by the City Corporation. It was widely accepted that the lifts maintained by the City were not operating in a way that was considered acceptable and Members were informed that the age of the lifts as well as the availability and speed of availability of parts through suppliers were both key issues here. Members were informed that Officers would seek to review the age, outages and actions required to bring each individual lift back into service and include information on this within the next report to this Committee. Officers also undertook to review the content of the report wholesale going forward to ensure that

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 7.

8.

Valid planning applications received by Department of the Built Environment* pdf icon PDF 38 KB

Report of the Chief Planning Officer and Development Director.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 8.

Minutes:

The Committee received a report of the Chief Planning Officer and Development Director detailing development and advertisement applications determined by the Chief Planning Officer and Development Director or those so authorised under their delegated powers since the report to the last meeting.

 

RESOLVED – That the report be noted.

 

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 8.

9.

Delegated decisions of the Chief Planning Officer and Development Director* pdf icon PDF 93 KB

Report of the Chief Planning Officer and Development Director.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 9.

Minutes:

The Committee received a report of the Chief Planning Officer and Development Director detailing development applications received by the Department of the Built Environment since the report to the last meeting.

 

RESOLVED – That the report be noted.

 

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 9.

10.

Outstanding Items* pdf icon PDF 84 KB

Report of the Town Clerk.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 10.

Minutes:

The Committee received a report of the Town Clerk setting out its list of Outstanding Actions.

 

The Town Clerk reported that, at the request of Members, this item would feature in both the main and the ‘for information’ packs and highlighted that the points included here had been updated.

 

A Member questioned whether the Committee might set a target by which outstanding items were to be signed off going forward.  Officers agreed with this but highlighted that certain matters, such as the first two listed here, were outside of their control and dependent on external timetables.

 

RECEIVED.

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 10.

11.

Questions on matters relating to the work of the committee

Minutes:

Completion of the Riverside Walkway

A Member requested an urgent update on this and a pledged date of completion/opening for the Riverside Walkway.

 

Another Member stated that she understood that there was a condition attached to an application whereby the hotel could not open until the walkway had been completed. A Member responded to state that the hotel had completed their requirements and installed a beautiful piece of walkway however, the City had failed to have the connecting parts ready which had caused the hotel some embarrassment as well as a delayed opening.

 

Officers undertook to provide a written update to all on these matters ahead of the next meeting.

 

COLPAI Travel Plan

A Member commented that residents had recently raised the issue of the travel plan for the COLPAI School site with her, stating that the Plan had suggested that there should be no traffic to the site. In reality, parents were frequently driving to the site to drop off and collect their children. Residents had raised this point with Officers and been told that the level to which the constraints of the Travel Plan can be imposed on third parties such as parents and guardians was extremely limited as it was not possible to take planning enforcement action against the legitimate and legal use of the public highway. The Member therefore questioned the use/value of the Travel Plan given that most developments had third party users.

 

Officers undertook to provide the Member with a written response on this.

 

 

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 11.

12.

Any other Business that the Chairman considers urgent

Minutes:

Building of the Year – 22 Bishopsgate

The Chairman was pleased to report that AXA had won the Building of the Year Award at the Better Society Sustainability Awards for 22 Bishopsgate. It had been up against very strong competition with the building’s approach to renewable energy and energy reduction being remarked upon specifically.  

 

City Corporation’s Thermal Comfort Guidelines

The Chairman added that the City’s Thermal Comfort Guidelines had been shortlisted for the RTPI Awards for Planning Excellence with the winner due to be announced at the end of November.

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 12.