Agenda item

Traffic order review - process and next steps

Report of the Executive Director of Environment


The Committee received a report of the Executive Director of Environment providing details of the two main workstreams for the Traffic Order review instructed by the Court of Common Council.


A Member raised a point in respect of Destination City, commenting that the Court of Common Council had approved a wider plan for City Recovery which contained multiple facets applicable to the Committee, including Destination City. The Member commented that it could be problematic to focus on a subset of measures already agreed rather than the whole, as other issues also needed focus in order to fulfil what was agreed, including exercise facilities, which were requested by a significant number of survey respondents. The Member noted that the matter would come back to Committee and suggested that the Committee consider the plan as a whole.


The Executive Director of Environment responded that Destination City was specifically referred to in the original Motion to Court of Common Council, but confirmed that references to Future City could be added and that there was no intention to suggest that outcomes from the City Recovery taskforce would not be incorporated.


With regards to consultation, a Member queried why the City Streets survey referenced in paragraph 12 had been included as part of the engagement, adding their concerns that this could result in overengineering or consultation fatigue. Another Member stressed that experience of previous consultations be taken into account, and that officers should ensure that all relevant user groups were sufficiently consulted, and their responses considered. The Member proposed that a senior party be engaged in the consultation to provide assurance that the line and selection of questioning was appropriate and inclusive of user groups. The Chairman commented that he felt recent projects such as Beech Street had demonstrated that great efforts and diligence were taken in formulating consultation questions, with the assistance of external agencies, and that perceived biases were removed.


The Executive Director of Environment responded that it had been intended to run the City Streets survey again prior to the Traffic Order Review, as it helped understand how effectively the Transport Strategy was being delivered, and on that basis it had been thought logical to align the survey so that those responses could inform the Traffic Order Review. The Executive Director of Environment assured Members that this would not cause any delay. On the wider consultation point, the Committee was advised that officers were increasingly using consultancies for assistance and to provide a greater degree of independence, but were happy to be led if Members felt an independent scrutineer would be beneficial.


A Member commented that they had some concern on the resources being used and felt that more consideration should be given to future-proofing as part of these exercises. The Member added that they felt more points could have been worked through as part of debate at Court of Common Council. The review would be based on current traffic flows, which may not account for the impact of initiatives such as Destination City further down the line or provide sufficient focus on what the City Corporation and stakeholders wanted the future City to look like. The Member urged officers to consider building in extra work to take forward which would ensure tangible benefits.


The Chairman thanked Members and officers for their comments, adding that the Committee had a clear mandate from the Court of Common Council which they were required to execute, and agreed that this was an ongoing piece of work which would have long-lasting execution.


RESOLVED – That the report be noted.

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