6 Dec 2012

Notes from the STACC public meeting on Monday 3rd December

Around twenty five people turned up to STACC's public meeting at the Council Offices on Monday.

Jim Chisholm from Cambridge Cycling Campaign gave an in formative talk on CCCs work, giving us a lot to think about which we will be discussing at committee meetings.

Some notes on the presentation are on this post because they take up too much space here and may spark off some comments, which are better handled in a post of their own.

Speaker illness meant we didn't get an update on the St Albans Cycle study- we should get the results in a few months and we'll share them with you.

Here are some updates on what's happening with cycling facilities in St Albans:

Verulamium Park bike routes:

The East to West route (Verulamium Museum to Westminster Lodge) is to be implemented in two stages

Stage 1: Initial signage and speed humps will be put in place to permit use by cyclists by the end of December 2012. The work started on the 2nd December and the plan is to have this completed by the Christmas holidays.

Stage 2: The second stage will take place in February/March and will include works to sort out drainage and other engineering issues, together with a final top cover to match the North/South route.

The Hollywell Hill junction at the Westminster Lodge end of that park needs some attention to make it less threatening for people cycling to the park, particularly from the Alban Way. It should have some work done as part of the Green Ring and it has also been identified as requiring attention in the Public Realm Design document.

Alban Way:
Scoping works and preparation of cost estimates to upgrade and resurface various deteriorated sections of the Alban Way within the St. Albans District now in progress. The upgrading and resurfacing works are to be completed before end of March 2013. (Note that via past representations STACC will check the surfacing is OK before the job is signed off)

STACC is talking with local horse riding representatives about how horses can be accommodated on the section between Hixberry Lane and Ellenbrook road, looking to see if there are any ways of accommodating horse, cyclists and walkers. There are a number of issues to be looked at.

The Green Ring
A Feasibility study on options for the St. Albans Green Ring Project is underway and an initial Joint County/District Member Steering Working Group meeting is to be held next week prior to various consultations with stakeholders. Some background is here.

20 MPH Limit
The trail 20 mph area is almost ready to commence.

A414 Cycle path
STACC has proposed that the little-used footpath along the A414 should be converted to a cycle route. This request has been stalled for a while because of the width of the path, but it should now be reconsidered since the DfT guidance now acknowledges shared paths can be narrower on paths rarely used by pedestrians.

Pinch point at Nicholas Breakspear School
A pinch point has been built for traffic calming outside the school. Pinch points are generally not a good feature for people on bikes because unless you are assertive and move into centre of the lane you risk being very closely overtaken if car tries to pass at the pinch point. This pinch is very tight and doesn't confirm to best practice design principles. STACC has raised this with Herts Highways, we'll look at what we should do in the future depending on Herts Highways' response.

Change of company for Herts Highways.
Opus Arap has replaced Mouchel as the main highways contractor. This doesn't necessarily mean much for cycling facilities since many employees have passed from one company to the other, keeping the same job.

Do we have a Hertfordshire 'cycling officer'
Cycling appears to be being reorganised at the moment and doesn't appear in anyone's job title as far as we can tell.

Bike Week 2013
First Capital Connect have offered us £1000 in sponsorship for bike week. We're looking at opportunities, if you have any ideas please let us know. A focus on an event in the park would be good to get people using the new cycle routes.

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