Community Council submits response to ELC Transport proposals for road safety

In 2012 the Transport team from East Lothian Council submitted suggestions for road safety improvements. Your Community Council recently responded and we’re sharing this with you.

In 2012 the Transport team from East Lothian Council submitted suggestions for road safety improvements. Your Community Council recently responded and we’re sharing this with you.

A map showing the PCC Roads sub-committee's recommendations to ELC's Transport team
A map showing the PCC Roads sub-committee’s recommendations to ELC’s Transport team
Pencaitland Community Council, which formed a Roads sub-committee to deal with this topic, drafted a response paper addressing the original ELC suggestions, which can be seen here.

The subsequent report from the Roads sub-committee of Pencaitland Community Council, called “COMMUNITY CONSULTATION TRAFFIC CALMING MEASURES REPORT AND RECOMMENDATIONS”, can now be read online [PDF] and you can view a Google Map which illustrates where the sub-committee believes ELC can implement improvements and make both pedestrians and road users safer.

Below we are reproducing the covering letter which recently went to ELC along with the Roads sub-committee report.

“This is the community’s response to the plans originally presented to Pencaitland Community Council back in July 2012. Since receiving these plans we have reported on it and shared it widely via traditional methods, such as posters and suggestions boxes in the local post office and shops, as well as through the local school and online/social media.

Now, after quite a lot of consultation we’re reverting to your department with our thoughts in the attached PDF, taking into consideration the views from across the spectrum of the community.

Our primary concern is that we ensure you have time to consider our views prior to the skimming of the A6093 through Pencaitland later this year, in order that any measures we are seeking from Transport can be factored in as part of that scheduled work.

On the whole, within Pencaitland proper we are seeking road traffic measures which involve far less additional work than I think was envisaged when ELC Transport was proposing physically narrowing the road and widening the pavements. However, apart from the addition of painted cycle paths we are seeking two double D islands and a further pedestrian crossing (Zebra) at Pencaitland Park. The latter would not only slow traffic entering/exiting Pencaitland but also provide a safe crossing for children using the pick up/drop off point for school buses.

For the rest of the village we would like to see a consistency of approach in terms of positioning speed signs and rumble strips at all entrances to the village, with the exception of Huntlaw Road which is too minor. Some of this work has already been carried out but it is apparent that elements have yet to be completed, such as rumble strips and the painting of relocated 30mph white on red signage directly onto the tarmac.

Of great concern was the recent accident that put 11 year old Harry into a coma on the B6363 through Boggs Holdings shortly before school broke up for the summer. We had already extended the scope of your department’s original plan to include the Boggs, and would ask you to give serious consideration to how we improve the safety of both pedestrians and cyclists, young and old, on these stretches of road. The B6363 leads to and from many residential properties which currently lack a defined pavement or even a painted cycle lane.

Lastly, there is the big ticket issue of a roundabout over the current crossroads. Many people welcome your department’s original suggestion of a roundabout at the eastern entrance into Pencaitland. However, a significant proportion of people have expressed concern about the necessary relocation of the War Memorial that this plan would require. We would like to propose a slightly altered version of the roundabout plan which would obviate the need to relocate the War Memorial from it’s general location today.

Once you have had time to digest the views and proposals in the attached document and the associated visual on the map, we would appreciate the opportunity of having a follow up discussion with you to consider next steps and what your department can do to meet the desires of locals for safer roads and pavements for those living in and around Pencaitland.

All the best

Ralph
Chair, Pencaitland Community Council”

Cycling in East Lothian

You may be interested to know that the Visit East Lothian website, featured in our Useful Links page, includes a section on cycling around the county. It includes handy cycle maps in PDF format you can download.

You may be interested to know that the Visit East Lothian website, featured in our Useful Links page, includes a section on cycling around the county. It includes handy cycle maps in PDF format you can download.

Council seeking your views on local transport

East Lothian Council is going through the process of updating its Local Transport Strategy (LTS) and wants to know the views of organisations and individuals.

East Lothian Council is going through the process of updating its Local Transport Strategy (LTS) and wants to know the views of organisations and individuals.

The original 2001 Local Transport Strategy document from ELC - click to view the PDF

The current LTS was published back in 2001 and is now being revised to try to reflect the changes that have taken place since then. You can influence this process by participating in this online consultation questionnaire.

The Council’s spokesman on transport issues is Barry Turner. He says, “Transport is fundamental to today’s society whether it is for work or leisure or the delivery of the goods and services. The Council’s ‘Contract with the People’ calls for a sensible transport strategy to meet these requirements but we also recognise that transport planning is not simply about choosing and developing different travel options but considering ways of reducing the overall need for travel.”

The Council has now produced a consultation paper which is seeking your views on the priorities, scope and content of an updated LTS based on the following questions:

• What are the priorities for transport you would like to see addressed?
• What are your aspirations for sustainable transport in East Lothian?
• What would encourage to you to walk and cycle more?
• What would encourage you to use public transport more?
• Do you agree that we need to reduce the overall need to travel?

Interestingly, as far back as 2004 Alastair Guild of the Rural Design Group consulted with the villagers in and around Pencaitland, putting together a “Pencaitland Statement” [PDF], which looked at the strength, weaknesses, opportunities and threats to wider village life from effective (or bad) planning and development.

One aspect picked up in this statement was Transport. The document states, “Traffic, and in particular the speed of traffic at the War Memorial and through the village and across the bridge seems to be another issue impacting on use and enjoyment of the public realm, and on feelings of safety. The responses make a number of suggestions for ways in which the situation might be improved.”

Under ‘Opportunities’ the 2004 statement says, “Measures are needed to control and reduce the speed and volume of traffic in, through and around the village, to extend the footpath from the bridge linking West and East Pencaitland as far as Limekilns and also to move the traffic lights further east. The condition of the kerbstone opposite the Church is evidence of the number of vehicles failing to negotiate the road safely. The removal of a length of indifferent but protected wall would improve safety for pedestrians and motorists alike.”

On public transport the 2004 statement adds, “The village would benefit from a faster, more direct bus service to Edinburgh and a more regular bus service to Haddington”.

So to help inform opinions, a consultation questionnaire is now online, together with the Council’s 2001 Local Transport Strategy [PDF] document. Give yourself between 10 and 20 minutes to complete the online questionnaire.

If you’d prefer a paper copy or have any other questions, you can email LTS@eastlothian.gov.uk. Please submit views by Wednesday 20 July 2011.

HAVE YOUR SAY

Have you got any views on transport? Fill in the above questionnaire and if you have a particular concern on some aspect of transport in either Pencaitland or East Lothian generally, please leave a comment below…