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TOPIC: Fox Lane low-traffic neighbourhood: Working towards a compromise

Fox Lane low-traffic neighbourhood: Working towards a compromise 26 Feb 2020 14:24 #5258

Interesting to read the minutes of last week's FLDRA meeting and in particularly the summary of the LTN discussion:
There was discussion from residents about how there would be
more inconvenience for motorists in the area with longer
journeys but it was hoped that the roads would be safer and
healthier for pedestrians and cyclists. Public transport,
particularly buses, would need to be improved if residents were
to accept these changes.

This statement doesn't reflect what the people in the room said. Here's what I heard: All (except one?) were in strong favour of an LTN and welcomed the benefits of a safer, quieter, less-polluted and more pleasant environment. It was recognised that inevitably some vehicle journeys will take longer but the meeting agreed this is outweighed by the benefits. Speakers also agree that improvements in public transport would also encourage people to drive less.

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Fox Lane low-traffic neighbourhood: Working towards a compromise 26 Feb 2020 15:12 #5259

This is what happens when an RA operates under undue influence from a particularly vociferous campaigner. It's output reflects the views of that person/persons not the group as a whole let alone the area as a whole.

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Fox Lane low-traffic neighbourhood: Working towards a compromise 26 Feb 2020 17:03 #5260

David,
More paranoia? The person I suspect you refer to as a "particularly vociferous campaigner" wasn't at the meeting and had nothing to do with writing the minutes. Isn't it time to focus on the next iteration of the council plan?

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Fox Lane low-traffic neighbourhood: Working towards a compromise 26 Feb 2020 18:09 #5261

Basil Clarke Basil Clarke's Avatar Topic Author
In response to the forum contributions above from Adrian Day, David Eden and Colin Younger about the minutes of the FLDRA discussion of the Fox Lane low-traffic neighbourhood proposals:

Colin's point about focusing on the next iteration of the council's plan is a valid one, and hopefully we'll know what it is soon, but nevertheless I think there are things that need saying about the meeting and the minutes.

1. Summarising this kind of discussion isn't easy, of course, but I think that Adrian's version is more accurate than the official minutes. There was much criticism from the councillors present at the meeting, there was dismissal of the idea from the chair, but when it came to speakers from the floor, several people spoke very strongly in favour of the scheme and one person spoke against, her point being that the scheme would do nothing to help residents of Cranley Gardens (which is questionable anyway).

2. Re David's point and Colin's response: If the "vociferous opponent" refers to Paul Mandel, then it's true that he wasn't at the meeting and I'm not aware of any evidence that he influenced the minutes, so David needs to give more consideration before firing off comments (as the Russian say, "Measure thrice, cut once").

3. Re Paul Mandel, he has certainly been a "vociferous opponent" in the fairly recent past, but I think everyone who was there will agree that at the meeting that he convened in January he acted impartially - unlike last week's chair, who began by speaking against a low-traffic neighbourhood, stating that he saw no need for excluding through traffic, and proceeded to read out the message from Richard Eason in a very sarcastic tone, implying that the talk of consultation was fake. He then allowed the councillors to spend an inordinate amount of time criticising the deputy council leader's handling of the consultation (my point is the amount of time they were allowed to speak, not what they said), leaving very little time to discuss the main matter at hand - the proposed alternative schemes. Furthermore, while insisting, quite properly, that no-one must interrupt someone who was speaking, when Jeremy Hay-Campbell was speaking in favour of the scheme, the chair stood up and shouted over him, telling him to be quiet.

4. Again re Paul Mandel: Paul Mandel set up the FLATWG working group and FLDRA helped distribute his survey questionnaire, which was subsequently admitted to be biased against a low-traffic neighbourhood. I think it's a fair assumption that many people who participated in the FLATWG discussions were initially opposed to a LTN. However, presumably as the result of people's minds being changed during those discussions, which were led by a professional traffic engineer, David Bird, the group ended up by writing to the council endorsing a scheme to prevent through traffic.

To my mind, the most significant thing said during the debate was the report for the spokesperson for FLATWG (I didn't record her name), who said "FLATWG very much support the green scheme" (the green scheme being the alternative plan proposed by the Fox Lane LTN Group).

Significant because it was a statement made on behalf of a group that had initially been sceptical about the idea of a low-traffic neighbourhood.

None of which comes over in the official minutes .
The following user(s) said Thank You: David Eden

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Fox Lane low-traffic neighbourhood: Working towards a compromise 27 Feb 2020 10:17 #5263

@Colin
I do not consider it "paranoia" given, as Basil & Adrian have noted, not only were the official minutes heavily skewed to be less favourable towards LTNs than was actually the case at the meeting but that also FLDRA's purported independent survey was a) also skewed against the LTN plans; and b) created by and to be sent to Mr Mandel who has been against every scheme prioritising walking/cycling over motoring since I moved into the area c.10 years ago.

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