Quietway – delayed??

Residents have received a letter through their doors saying works to install the Quietway will start next Monday 7 August.  This came as a surprise as the Council has not yet decided to proceed with the Quietway.

Council officers have made their final proposals and it is expected that just a rubber-stamp formal decision will be made, as we were previously told, by 27 July by the relevant Councillor.

That decision has not been made, so maybe there are further thoughts being had at the Town Hall.  Maybe Cllr Wingfield whose responsibility it is to make the final decision is having doubts.  Or perhaps he has just been too busy on a host of other matters which have taken precedence.

It seems the letters to residents have come out too quickly and before the decision has been made.  Village Councillor Jane Lyons tells us she expects  a decision TOMORROW and that the works will NOT start on Monday!

Parking – Crowds -Safety -Pollution

We may think of kerbsides as just space on the public highway next to the pavement.  But they are more than that.  Kerbsides include footpaths by the kerb and which might be widened for tree planting and street seating. They include the white posts and green verges we love in Dulwich.

There is great competition for the kerbsides from vehicles, cyclists, pedestrians, house occupants, push-chairs, etc. etc.  We know only too well how busy our kerbsides are at times and how they are hazardous for the unwary, the reckless and those of us who are a unsteady because of age, youth or illness.

Southwark Council recognises the need for a sensible management of kerbsides and is consulting on a ‘Kerbside Strategy’.  Southwark’s Kerbside strategy_Feb’17

The Council makes some important points for us to think about.  Among them are:

Demographic Pressure: The population is growing faster in Southwark than expected. At the last census in 2011 it was 288,000 and today is estimated to be 306,000. The government forecasts it will be 370,000 by 2031, an increase of 82,000 or 28% in 20 years!
Parking:  60% of Southwark households don’t own a vehicle, yet parking in the borough takes up an increasing amount of kerbside space. In our streets, however, many households own multiple cars and large ones at that.  Parking is the issue which sparks greatest interest in our streets.  There has to be an improvement in access to and usage of public transport.
Road Safety and the Environment: The Council wants to improve the lives  of older residents and to enable them to live independently for longer. Older people typically drive less and favour public transport. There are increasing numbers of older people in Southwark.  There is a demand for wider footpaths, more frequent and safer pedestrian crossings, accessible bus stops and uncluttered, pleasant neighbourhood centres to sit and relax in.
Traffic Collisions: More people walking or cycling in Southwark are killed or injured than in any other mode of transport. Road traffic accidents are increasing each year.  In 2015 there were over 1,000 in Southwark with 90 fatal ones.

Air quality:  According to the 2015 King’s College University report, up to 9,500 deaths in London each year can be linked to air pollution. Southwark’s road transport emissions are amongst the highest in London. There are a number of sites that exceed legal levels of NO2 (Southwark Air Quality Action Plan, 2013).  At peak traffic periods, Dulwich Village experiences poor air quality, right by the primary schools.

There are many competing demands which we are making and are set out in the Council’s draft strategy.  The council wants our views.

The consultation period on Southwark’s Kerbside Strategy has just started and closes on 28 April.

Front gardens in ugly Turney Road

Front garden layouts are a bugbear of Turney Road – ugly with so many unsightly car parks standing brutally in front of our fine Edwardian houses.

However with the influx of new residents paying high prices for their homes and investing even more into them, there has been a welcome increased resident acknowledgement that frontages are detracting from their homes and from the street.

In response the Scheme of Management has provided an example front garden layout for the houses in Turney Road, that are unable to comply with the Scheme of Management Guidelines for Hardstandings due to the small size of the front garden.  The example drawing is below and more information is on its website.  They form the basis of the Manager’s approach to an application to redesign a front garden.  Any queries should be referred to Nina Rees at the Scheme of Management office.

0206_001-1

Where residents intend to park a car on a forecourt they will need to apply to Southwark Council for permission to create a new entry into the highway – from the forecourt into the road.  The Council can give approval under planning and highways legislation to create a new kerb crossover onto the road.  The crossover is recognised by its ‘dropped’ kerb edge.

New Recycling Bins for Turney Road

Lambeth council is introducing green wheelie bins for recycling, to replace the current clear recycling sack service. The new green recycling wheelie bins will start to make an appearance on Monday 16 January, and the delivery is scheduled to take approximately six weeks. 

In the Southwark end of the Road, Southwark Council has provided BLUE wheelie for recycling for some years.  We welcome the bins but hope that this is not another confusing difference in waste collection between neighbouring boroughs: the Southwark GREEN bin is for NON-recyclables.  Just yards away in Lambeth, in the same road, GREEN is FOR recyclables!

Lambeth Council is holding a briefing for Street Champions at 6pm on Tuesday 10 January.  Perhaps the Street Champions can ask about this.

Thameslink wants to cut service to Dulwich

The Thameslink consultation closes on Thursday at 5pm. This proposes to remove the service via Sydenham Hill and West Dulwich into Blackfriars and City Thameslink. This will probably have an impact on anyone in the Dulwich area who uses trains (as there will be increased over crowding on the remaining services). Anyone affected should respond to the survey. It is not the easiest survey to complete, but the service is worth protecting. The service is part of the tl4 Kent route.
All relevant info can be found by searching for ‘Thameslink consultation’.

High air pollution in Dulwich Village

London Air has issued the following urgent health warning for HIGH levels of pollution along main roads and locations such as Dulwich Village:

An area of high pressure over the UK is resulting in calm, settled and cold conditions and poor dispersal of local pollutants.

Thursday is forecast to be slightly less cold with winds picking up a little which should lead to the currently elevated pollution levels clearing during the day. However, another cold night tonight with light winds is likely to result in further ‘moderate’ nitrogen dioxide at busy London roadsides on Thursday morning before conditions start to improve. There is also a chance of further ‘high’ and ‘moderate’ PM10 and PM2.5 if pollution is slow to clear.

Friday, early mist and fog will slowly clear to leave a mainly cloudy day with the possibility of patchy light rain in the east later. Even lighter winds than of late, and the early mist will likely cause another day of pollution build-up, escalated by the already elevated pollution levels.  Consequently, ‘Moderate’ levels of nitrogen dioxide are expected to occur close to busy road locations.

Furthermore, air will begin to arrive from the North-East later in the day and may import some polluted air as it passes near to industrialized areas of Western Europe. This incoming air will add to London’s local pollution burden and is likely to result in ‘Moderate’ levels of PM10 and PM2.5 particulates.

Quietway – breaking news!

At this week’s Dulwich Community Council (DCC) the meeting chair read out the following statement regarding Quietway 7.

“The cabinet member requested officers, following feedback at the last community council meeting, to reconsider various aspects of the design and related issues.  In particular officers were asked to conclude the Foundation Schools Coach service study (working in partnership with the Foundation schools) and this work has now been completed and an action plan around the high priority issues has been developed.  It is expected that this will lead to significant improvements in the impact of the service on the local community, including the removal of 10 of 11 coaches from Calton Avenue each morning and significantly less coach congestion on Townley Road in the afternoon.

He has also secured a commitment from Transport for London (TfL) to attend a stakeholder meeting in Dulwich in the coming weeks, and if the Quietway proposals are to proceed, the cabinet member is committed to continued working with TfL and the community on a holistic study of traffic issues in the Dulwich area over the next year.”