Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Town centre planning suggestions

I put a motion to the Central Area Community Forum a few years ago for a town-wide 20mph zone. The motion was passed unanimously by about fifty people attending a meeting in a Guildhall room.  Since that time no work has been done on the campaign.  However I suggest that as that the campaign should be revived. The idea could be presented under the umbrella term of  'shared space' with the explanation that a 'concerted effort should be made to improve the town's roads for the use of cycles and pedestrians at the expense of the motor car in residential streets, all in accordance with the latest thinking of urban planning. It should be possible to make big improvements at reasonable cost if the 'default' situation is taken to be a lower traffic speed and only the faster speed is signposted. This would take a bold initiative from the appropriate local authority department which would need the sanction of the DfT. The town should be determined to be in the forefront in new urban traffic approaches.

It should be accepted that given the finite space available there is no 'solution' to the parking problem in the town other than tinkering with the rights of access to parking of different groups of motorists. The situation for the users of other forms of transport should be improved.

The built environment is also crying out for attention. Paved areas are derelict and dangerous, the signposting for traffic has been provided with little thought to the visual impact.