So Southwark have closed the Village Junction at Court Lane and Carlton Avenue and also Melbourne Grove. This has been enabled by the Government’s funding of emergency measures following Covid19. It will take number of days if not weeks for the Satnavs to catch up and people to look for alternative routes so it will be difficult to see the longer term effects until after the summer when Schools are due back fully. Attached are notes of a zoom meeting with Village Councillors yesterday which hopefully will provide some clarification about what is happening. As you will see it looks like the loss of revenue and increased costs due to Covid19 has led to the withdrawal of funding for Our Healthy Streets Dulwich. All that is left to get some reduction in traffic is the Government scheme which has been called StreetSpace. Unfortunately it does mean there is not going to be a holistic scheme for the area and interventions will be introduced piecemeal.
For those who wish to see some reduction it is vital to continue to complete the Southwark StreetSpace Commonplace map. https://southwarkstreetspace.commonplace.is/comments. Also write to the councillors Margy.Newens@southwark.gov.uk, Richard.Leeming@southwark.gov.uk and the decision maker who is Councillor Richard Livingstone Richard.Livingstone@southwark.gov.uk who is the Southwark Cabinet member for Environment, Transport and the Climate Emergency. Also copy in our MP firstname.lastname@example.org
A number have written already and whilst the response is fairly standard and non-committal it is making sure that this side of the village will be considered in the next round for some intervention. So if you want the road to become quieter and actually be less a main road then please write and complete the map. Safer routes due to more safer cycling (Turney is meant to be a Quietway), ability to social distance by emptier roads and reduction in pollution through a reduction in traffic are the key aspects to mention alongside the fact that the road is used by many school children walking/cycling to all the schools in Dulwich. Many residents supported the closure of Turney in the OHS consultation and this may be the last chance for sometime for this to happen and to see what the effect is. As I write this traffic is streaming past and a few brave souls are trying to cycle on the road, children are coming back from the Schools and nurseries, so different from 2 months ago.
Below are some notes of a meeting with Margy Newens and Richard Leeming Councillors on 29 June 2020 with Michael Wilkins (TRRA) and Charles Newman (BRRA)
Re: Our Healthy Streets Dulwich (OHSD) and StreetSpace
OHSD (Our Healthy Streets Dulwich)is not formally dead but is suspended with very little likelihood of it being resurrected in the future. TfL do not have any funds for it.
The Council is looking at about a 50million deficit because of the impact of Covid19 on revenue and costs. Therefore there is little Council money available for investment in OHSD
What is on offer is some money from Central Government for Covid related experimental measures, a total of £225million across all local authorities on a spend it or lose it deal.
There is more money coming in September under the scheme. This is when further announcements will be made. However the decisions will be made before. The decisions are made by Richard Livingstone, Cabinet member for Environment, Transport and the Climate Emergency, in consultation with our Local Councillors, Margy Newens and Richard Leeming.
The scheme is for social distancing, active travel and safer environments. Southwark are looking at interventions that cover these criteria but also include pollution reduction.
The interventions are under the Emergency Traffic Act and can last up to 18 months and if they are to be made permanent a consultation process has to be carried out. Any intervention can be removed sooner if it is clear that it is unsafe. It is estimated it will take a period of a few months to bed in. Further interventions in the Village Ward will be under consideration. Margy and Richard were positive about what we have done so far to get Turney on the map so if you would like an intervention to reduce traffic in Turney you continue your efforts steadily over the next month. You will need to argue the case within the criteria above. So all the points that have been made about the Quietway, schools, difficulties for making it a safe road for pedestrians with social distancing and the amount of traffic causing pollution are all relevant. It will be important to add further comments or agree with comments on the Southwark StreetSpace Commonplace map. https://southwarkstreetspace.commonplace.is/comments
One difference from OHSD is that because any intervention is for a trial period those interventions that take time to set up and have high costs, e.g. setting up a permit scheme, are not going to be favoured. Cameras maybe included in interventions but it will be blanket coverage and no special access for residents because that would mean a permit scheme.
Regarding Turney and the closure of the Village Junction there are two traffic number monitoring points one near the Village Junction and one near that SCST sports ground entrance. At present there is also one on Burbage below Stradella. Not very useful as traffic can use the Stradella/Winterbrook rat run to avoid the monitor. The broken one near 103/105 Turney has been reported and is known about and is not part of the present monitoring.
Many staff were moved to respond to Covid-19. This has meant that the results of the OHSD consultation has not been completed and the analysts have been moved to look at the results of the 3000 comments so far on the Southwark StreetSpace Commonplace map. Also as no decisions were made about the plans for area C no modelling has been done.
The costs for planters are £600 per planter plus ongoing maintenance costs although community groups are being encouraged to take over the maintenance of the ones at the Village Junction.