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Agenda and minutes

Venue: Waltham Forest Town Hall

Contact: Eniko Varga  020 8496 4211 Email: eniko.varga@walthamforest.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

47.

APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE AND SUBSTITUTE MEMBERS

Minutes:

Apologiesfor absence were received from Flash Bristow, Councillor Clyde Loakes, Councillor Bob Wheatley, Councillor Laurance Wedderburn (substitute Councillor Jemma Hemsted), Roger Gillham and David Hecker.

 

The Chair opened the meeting and informed the group about the sad death of Ivor Chapman. The members paid tribute to Mr Chapman with one minute silence. The group agreed to send flowers to his funeral and express condolences to his wife.

 

Introduction followed.

 

 

 

48.

MINUTES ( 3 minutes)

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on 20th May 2009 were approved as a correct record with the following amendments:

 

Minute 38 – 3.2 – Primrose Hill should read as Prospect Hill.

 

Page 6 – Peter Woodrow did not mention safety, he only stated that three drivers refused to stop.

 

Minute 44 – It was not Gerhard, but a resident who expressed concern that the Cycling and Walking item had been placed at the end of the agenda.

 

Matters arising:

Neil Bullen explained that the council had won the Queens Road station footbridge case in the High Court and been granted an injunction against the Housing Association which obliged them to build the footbridge. They were advised not to appeal against the decision but they still have two weeks in which to do so; if an appeal was not lodged within two weeks, enforcement can be started.

 

49.

CYCLING AND WALKING (20 mins including questions)

Reports attached

Minutes:

Gerhard Weiss' report on Waltham Forest cycle track maintenance was circulated with the agenda.

 

Gerhard was thanked for a very helpful report and he asked the group to explore how maintenance of the current network of cycle tracks could be improved.

 

Councillor Woollcott thanked Gerhard for the report that highlighted the problems, and suggested that the issues should be passed on to the appropriate council officers.

 

Gerhard mentioned that the reporting system itself should be looked at.

 

Cllr. Sinclair concluded that we have proper cycle tracks but little or very poor maintenance; he said that 4 months response time was unacceptable.

 

Action: Neil Bullen to send report to Public Realm in order to get proper, prompt maintenance when problems are noted.

 

The group then discussed the Cycling in Waltham Forest report.

 

Cllr. Meiszner asked whether cycle parking could be put in the Blackhorse Road offices site.

 

Action: Neil Bullen to find out about the availability of the site.

 

Lawrence Wortley stated that bad quality surface reduced access and created aquaplaning.

 

With regards the cycle tracks in the borough that are in poor condition, it was suggested that individual locations should be reported via WFD.

 

Peter Woodrow noted that the report did not mention where the Olympic Cycling Route would start and finish.

 

 

50.

MOBILITY AND ACCESS ISSUES (15 mins including questions)

To include an update on the Mobility Forum held on 23rd June 2009.

Minutes:

The group was referred to the Mobility Forum minutes held on 23rd June 2009.

 

Cllr. Sinclair mentioned that no representative of the TfL was at the meeting, they had a history of non-attendance. He asked that they should ensure the presence of a TfL representative at future Mobility Forum meetings.

He also mentioned that he took part on a Safer Transport presentation on 7th July 2009, that Inspector Vorley invited the Mobility Forum group to.

 

Cllr. Meiszner mentioned that the Safety Net was concerned with mobility issues, and Mobility Forum members were welcome to attend their meetings.

 

The Chair suggested that issues brought up on Mobility Forum (Minute 7.1; 7.2) should be picked up by the relevant officer.

Neil thought Parking Enforcement would be responsible for them.

 

Action: Neil to bring Mobility Forum issues (Minute 7.1; 7.2) to Keith Hanshaw's attention.

 

51.

LONDON OVERGROUND UPDATE (15 mins including questions)

Minutes:

Mungo Duncan, Project Manager represented London Overground on the meeting.

 

Mr Duncan explained that the customer satisfaction figures on Gospel Oak – Barking line had considerably increased.

 

Temporary improvements were made to CCTV coverage. Users of the stations had started to increase.

 

Major improvements such as deep clean and painting were also being done to refurbish the stations. Replacement of cameras and electronic systems were also carried out.

 

Over the following weeks there would be consultations with users seeking their input, views, and works would start in September.

The line was closed for 4 weeks last year, but reconstruction would still continue. Several bridges would be re-profiled and signalling work should be finished by the end of this year.

 

New rolling stock would arrive at BGO line in early 2010, they would be delivered in 2009, but first they would be tested.

 

North London line-

From Christmas 2009 the Gospel Oak - Stratford line would be closed, replacement buses would serve this route. London Overground expected that this would impact on the Gospel Oak - Barking line, and they would make people aware of the closure from September/October 2009.

 

Cllr. Meiszner asked how much money London Overground had got to invest in the Gospel Oak- Barking line.

He also wondered why bicycles were not allowed on the Gospel Oak -Barking line. There was always space on the trains, and bikes would fit if they were kept in the proper place.

 

London Overground is a self operating company by which a lot of investment had been made. Mr Duncan stated that the official policy was that bicycles were not allowed on the trains at any time. However, at off-peak times they tried to be flexible where it was possible.

 

Action: Mr Duncan to check new trains' layout, whether they would allow more space for bicycles, and if so to take it up with TfL.

 

Lawrence Wortley enquired whether the name of Leytonstone High Road station could be repainted, as it was so faded that passengers could not notice it. The name of the station on the bridge should be repainted.

 

Action: Mr Duncan welcomed the idea and will raise it.

 

Cllr. Sinclair requested to see a report on Leyton Midland station's security. There has been a lot of crime. He enquired what assurance we had that the new cameras would help to detect crime.

 

Mr Duncan assured the group that all cameras worked, they provided better visibility, clearer details. The Overground worked in close relationship with the police and community workers. Crime on Leytonstone High Road dropped considerably and platforms have become much safer.

 

Matt Ashby from British Transport Police explained that 3 officers covered the line from 7am until midnight. He assured the members that the cameras worked as they used them frequently to investigate incidents.

Crime levels dropped significantly in Leytonstone, but they were still aiming to reduce them.

 

Richard Pout mentioned that a BBC interview showed that there was general improvement on the Leyton Midland station,  ...  view the full minutes text for item 51.

52.

RAIL SERVICES UPDATE (15 mins including questions)

Minutes:

Keith Carini reported back on the actions from the last meeting.

 

He informed the group that new spikes were put up at Highams Park station to keep away pigeons from the platforms. They took RSPCA's advice to place them. The drainage that was blocked up in the subway was cleared 2 weeks prior to the meeting.

 

He explained that a CIS team was operating in Hackney to ensure stronger security.

The team had the power to arrest people involved with anti-social behaviour. In Walthamstow Central car park increased crime levels were experienced. 8 officers started to work to prevent crime, and early signs were encouraging.

 

Walthamstow Central station had problems with the drainage, 60 minutes of heavy rain had flooded the station.

 

Tim Hogg expressed his concern about the efficiency of the Oyster reader.

 

Cllr. Sinclair raised an issue regarding the noise caused by maintenance work in the early mornings at Chingford Station. He wondered whether residents could be informed about early morning rail works in advance.

 

Keith welcomed the idea, it would be an improvement on customer service, as well.

 

Action: Keith Carini to address noise issue.

 

53.

LONDON UNDERGROUND UPDATE (20 mins including questions)

Minutes:

Lucy Webster gave an update on the actions from the last meeting to the group.

 

-                    Victoria line countdown information was linked to the signalling system, and it should be accurate unless the train was delayed or held up. The countdown information therefore should be reliable as it is on other lines.

 

-                    New trains would run on Victoria line from the following week. If testing the whole stock was satisfactory they would be put into general service.

 

-                    Safety of Leyton station – A risk assessment was carried out; noted they had very well experienced, trained staff controlling the station. The station was considered very safe under the present method of operating.

 

-                    Leytonstone lighting – according to an initial check it was functioning correctly.

 

The Chair asked about an additional oyster reader at the side gate at Leyton station.

 

Lucy answered that Underground could not open the additional gate, as there was no oyster reader at that gate, installing it would cost additional money, and there was no funding for that.

 

Cllr Meiszner was not convinced with Lucy's answer on the countdown information.

 

Inspector Ashby explained that at Blackhorse Road station the countdown information was set from the time the train meant to have left Walthamstow Central station, but sometimes it was not ready therefore it was set back.

 

Cllr. Sinclair enquired what arrangements were made at Leytonstone to avoid overcrowding during the closure of Wanstead station.

He also asked about the arrangements at Leyton station when football matches were played.

 

Lucy advised that London Underground looked into what would happen during the closure of Wanstead station and found that no significant overcrowding was expected.

 

Crowding at Leyton – contingency plans were in place, emergency measures could be taken including utilizing the extra gate if it was necessary. The staff were highly trained.

 

Lawrence Wortley was not satisfied with Lucy's answer on Leytonstone subway lighting, he said it was grim and reduced efficiency. He wondered if it could be improved.

He also wanted to see a report on additional gate and oyster reader, and he would like a similar system to that operated at Snaresbrook station during rush hours.

 

Tim Hogg queried what the cost of an oyster reader would be, and suggested funding for that, could be obtained by the borough.

 

Actions:

-                    Lucy Webster to arrange a survey on Leytonstone subway lighting and report back.

-                    Lucy Webster to find out where the key of the side gate at Leyton station was.

 

Councillor Woollcott added that he went for a site visit and saw that when many people arrive at the station the additional gate can be opened, but there was no oyster reader at that gate. They were also told that trains could be held back outside the station to avoid overcrowding.

 

Lucy added that additional staff would be needed to operate the extra gate that meant additional costs.

 

Cllr. Asghar asked why the extra gate could not be opened to allow fluent flow of  ...  view the full minutes text for item 53.

54.

LONDON BUS SERVICES UPDATE (30 mins including questions)

Minutes:

Peter Howarth, Borough Relationship Managerfrom TfL Surface Transport outlined a number of Surface Transport developments over the past 12 Months.

 

Buses - 2.2 billion journeys in 2008/09, six million journeys a day on 6,800 buses, 700 routes, 39 in Waltham Forest. Exceeded performance targets.

 

New Bus for London - invite to bus manufacturers published in February 2009.  Key features, open platform, green technology and improved accessibility.  Anticipated new bus will be trialled in 2011 with new bus on streets early 2012.

 

Removal of bendy buses.  Begin in June/July 2009. All articulated buses removed by end of 2011.

 

Dial-a-ride.  Further 61 custom built minibuses adding to the fleet of 120 vehicles.  Improved design costing £3.9million.

 

Hybrid buses - 56 Hybrid buses in service with a further 300 by March 2011. Hybrids use 40% less fuel and reduce CO2 by 30%. 

 

Smoothing traffic- traffic signals review was underway. 1,000 traffic lights per year would be reviewed, 3,000 by 2012; completion in March 2015. 

 

SCOOT - Approx 30% of TfL's traffic signals are under Split Cycle Offset Optimisation Technique (SCOOT) control.  SCOOT provides real time signal management using sensors to adjust signal timings according to live traffic conditions.  TfL plans to roil out to an additional 1,000 sites by 2015.

 

Code conduct utility companies - TfL working to develop 'streetworks code of conduct'.  Utility companies asked to introduce courtesy boards to make it easier for public to identify disruptive or delayed street works. TfL has also update website fault reporting system to enable people to report road work concerns on line.

 

Road permit scheme - TfL working with 18 London boroughs to introduce a common permit scheme to enable TfL and borough to reduce the impacts of streetworks through better control, planning, coordination and execution. Likely to be operational by January 2010.

 

Motorbikes in bus lanes - now allowed in bus lanes in all TLRN roads on the Capital's red routes for a trial period ending June 2010.  Anticipated improved road safety and smooth traffic flow.

 

Encouraging cycling - TfL investing £111 million in cycling this year. Money spent on cycle hire scheme, improving parking and road conditions for cyclists.

 

Cycle highways - project will deliver 12 high profile radial routes into/out of Central London that will concentrate cycle flows and provide a fast efficient way into the centre.  First two in place by summer 2010 with all 12 complete by 2012.

 

Alcohol ban - been in force one year.  Research has shown that there is a high level of awareness coupled with substantial support for the ban - 84%.

 

Earn your travel back.  Mayor has pledged to allow under 18's who have had their free bus travel withdrawn for breaches of behaviour code to earn it back through voluntary community service.

 

iBus – now installed on all TfL buses.  iBus is the on board 'next stop' visual displays and audio announcement system.  iBus also keeps track of where buses are, and where they should be.  This means bus  ...  view the full minutes text for item 54.

55.

OLYMPIC UPDATE INCLUDING HALL FARM CURVE (20 mins including questions)

Minutes:

The Chair mentioned that they went for a trip in the Olympic Park where they saw maps of the prospective Olympic traffic only lanes.

 

Neil Bullen explained that they would seek to find out the costs of Hall Farm Curve at 2009 prices. The consultations would start later this month. They seek to present the modelling and financial information, calculate how much it would be to operate the service, how many people it would need to be financially viable and how much income it would generate.

 

Richard Pout and Lawrence Wortley pressed for the separation of the Lea Bridge Station plan from the Hall Farm Curve project as this would improve its chances of success.

 

 

56.

MAYOR'S TRANSPORT STRATEGY

Minutes:

A report was not available on this topic at the time of the meeting.

 

Neil Bullen explained that the public consultation would start after September and asked how the committee wanted to be involved in the process. He said they did not have an exact date for the document to be released.

 

Lawrence Wortley expressed concern with the air pollution caused by planes. He understood that this borough was being consulted about flight paths. The air pollution killed 3000 Londoners a year. The flight heights had a serious impact on the air and air traffic generated road traffic as well. Waltham Forest is an Olympic borough; he wanted to raise this issue with the Mayor. 

 

The committee should provide details on what was important to our borough. The principals, core issues of the borough should be outlined in the communication. It was crucial for the borough to respond; representatives of the group, officers/councillors should draw a working group.

 

Cllr. Meiszner suggested that a working group could look into it in greater detail and feed it back to the committee. A sub-committee should be small to be efficient.

 

Action:

- Committee Officer to find out whether political balance should apply for the sub- committee.

- Committee to appoint members for a transport strategy sub-committee.

 

Cllr. Meiszner, Richard Pout, Peter Woodrow and Lawrence Wortley expressed their interests in being a member of this sub-committee.

 

57.

DATE OF THE NEXT MEETING

20th October 2009.

Minutes:

The next meeting would be held on 20th October 2009.