[Electoral Divisions: All South Lakeland]
To consider a report by the Executive Director – Economy and Infrastructure
This report presents the minutes of the meetings of the Highways and Transportation Working Group held on 6 April 2022 and 25 April 2022 and brings forward recommendations for consideration by the Local Committee.
A report was considered from the Executive Director – Economy and Infrastructure regarding the Highways and Transportation Working Group meetings 6 April 2022 and 25 April 2022. The report provided the notes of the meetings of the Highways and Transportation Working Group held on 6 April and 25 April 2022 and included recommendations for consideration by the Local Committee.
The Chair of the Highways and Transportation Working Group presented the report. He advised that there had been 2 meetings of the Working Group since the last Local Committee meeting. He reported on the business conducted at the meeting held on 6 April 2022. This included a Streetworks presentation, Cross-A-Moor Traffic Regulation Orders and a Flood and Development Management briefing.
Members were informed about the meeting held on 25 April 2022 which considered the proposed Streetscape Improvement Works at Stramongate, Kendal. The meeting had been held to ensure that a decision could be made at this Local Committee meeting. A vote had taken place at the meeting which related to the placement of trees at the entrance to Stramongate. Members had voted in favour of removing the trees from the proposal. Mr Collins moved and Mr Bland seconded that the recommendations as set out in the report be agreed.
Mr Thornton moved an amendment to recommendation 3.2.2, that the words ‘without trees’ be removed from it. He stated that the scheme had been created to include trees and noted that the Working Group’s membership who could vote to recommend to Local Committee what they thought the decision should be on this matter, was small whereas the Local Committee had significantly more voting members who determined the decision which could result in a different decision.
He added that the scheme was being delivered on behalf of SLDC who wanted trees included. The scheme was presented to create a view with visual cues that it was a pedestrian friendly area. At the Working Group meeting, the Senior Manager, Highways Delivery had confirmed that the trees would not cause any problems and Mr Thornton trusted his professional opinion.
The amendment was seconded by Mr Wilson. He thought that the decision to not have trees as voted by the Working Group had been the wrong decision.
The Chair highlighted that the tree pits which would be used would not cause damage to utilities.
Mr Brook from SLDC reported that SLDC had worked with partners to develop the scheme. Trees were integral to the feeling of the area and the site was a precursor for future development in Kendal, when funding became available. He considered trees to be a valuable part of the scheme.
A member reminded the Committee that the scheme was intended to be the first step in a larger town centre improvement scheme and that if and when funding was received in future, it could be added to. He supported the trees as part of the scheme.
Mr Collins advised that he was not convinced that root baskets would not damage utilities, officers could not be 100% sure of the location of the utilities under the ground and the trees could cause damage in later years. If there were complications when digging took place, it could hold up the scheme which could impact on the money having to be spent by 14 November 2022. He suggested that trees could be planted in tubs or raised beds. Mr Bland concurred with the points made by Mr Collins.
One member talked about the historical background to trees being planted in Kendal. He thought that there could be archaeological implications to digging in the area. After expressing her support for the inclusion of trees, another member considered that should the trees cause any issues, officers could resolve them quickly and she felt reassured by the advice of the Senior Manager, Highways Delivery given at the Working Group meeting.
In summing up, Mr Thornton urged the Committee to support the inclusion of trees in the scheme.
The Chair put the amendment to the Committee. A vote was cast as follows: 11 in favour, 3 against, 0 abstentions. It was,
1 Local Committee notes the Minutes of the Working Group meetings of 6 April and 25 April 2022 which are attached as Appendices 1 and 2 of the report.
2 Local Committee: -
A Notes the details provided in Appendices 1, 2 and 3 of the Working Group report from the Executive Director – Economy and Infrastructure (attached as Appendix 3 of the report) which gave a Flood and Development Management Update and that the Local Committee notes that there are no additional comments in the Appendices to bring to the attention of Local Members. Any significant comments, changes and/or amendments will be highlighted in subsequent and future reports to the Highway and Transportation Working Group.
B Notes that Officers will proceed with the streetscape improvement scheme for Stramongate, Kendal, Design Option 3 and notes that South Lakeland District Council wish to enter into an agreement made under Section 278 of the Highways Act 1980, with the County Council arranging for the Highway Works to be carried out, at the expense of South Lakeland District Council