January 2023 Consultations

See you at Ferry Lane 7.30 for 8pm this evening, as usual (second Thursday of each month).

New Consultations

Not much this month. I didn't notice any new major planning applications or anything seriously affecting cycle routes, nor are there any traffic regulation orders proposed in western Norfolk.

So, the biggest consultation is the Pilot Cycle Hub from Vision King's Lynn. I was hoping that we could have met them this week or next, but it looks like being the end of the month, so we should probably consider whether to publish a draft response now, to help people commenting on it.

The other big thing is a Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plan for the rest of Norfolk, excluding the three areas already planned (Lynn, Norwich and Yarmouth). There's a copy of the presentation to the borough council's Regeneration Panel and you can watch a recording of the meeting too (it's the first item presented) if you want.

The presentation includes Hunstanton/Heacham and Downham Market, but doesn't cover Swaffham and Fakenham which are arguably in our area (because we ride to them and they have no other cycling campaign group) but not the borough council's. The most surprising thing is that the Lynn-Fakenham link is still awaiting its feasibility study, 4 years after the greenways project started. Cllr De Whalley asked about this at the meeting (about 25 mins into the recording) and the reply seemed to be that the work done so far would be incorporated into the LCWIP as a series of smaller schemes, but it had not gone far because the project was too big: disappointing but at least the work is not lost.

There will be a 6-week public consultation some time before Easter. How do we want to respond to what we know about? If we make a start now, then we can add the Breckland/North bits when we see them and publish our response sooner.

Updates on Old Consultations

The Southgates Masterplan got good support for the cycling elements: "83% agreed with the proposal to divert traffic around the South Gate, with additional strong support for retaining the gate’s use as a historic entrance by directing pedestrians and cyclists through it. These statistics were reflected in people’s comments, which spoke of the traffic problems people experienced and a desire to make it more friendly for pedestrians and cyclists, as well as protecting the South Gate. [...] An announcement on whether the bid has been successful is expected early in 2023."

Contracts have been signed for the Salters Road development (last discussed in August 2021) so building work starts soon. So far, the road has been kept clear if a bit muddy. Please keep checking and send photos if anything is wrong.

The bad new junction built on NCN1, allowed by NCC

The new St James Medical Centre on NCN1 (last discussed October 2021) has built a substandard non-LTN-compliant dangerous construction access across NCN1 (pictured above). It's a "pantomime" junction, because the danger is "behind you!" when riding east. Rule H2 of the highway code says that turning vehicles should give way to riders and walkers, but the markings confusingly show the opposite. LTN 1/20 Table 10-2 clearly states that this layout will "exclude most potential users and have safety concerns" (see below: 40mph road, 2 lanes to cross, uncontrolled). Several members have objected to Norfolk County Council about this, but no joy yet.

Gov.UK guidance LTN1/20 clearly shows the junction is unsafe

The industrial site at Griston (discussed in May 2022) is going to Breckland's planning committee next week. We've basically no problem with it (24-space cycle park, but space to expand), but I've grumbled at NCC Highways for their officer seeking more car parking and seeming to be unaware of the direct cycleway to Watton.

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