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Acomb in decline: Regeneration project needed

Empty shops including the former Council office

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Fly posting on empty shops

Following the disgraceful neglect of the recycling facilities in the Acomb car park, an inspection has revealed a growing number of problems in the Front Street area. It is to be hoped that the Council will now get to grips with these issues.

We’ve reported fly tipping to the back of the Front Street shops.

But we badly need to see an Acomb regeneration programme started. The partnership that was developing between the Council, traders, property owners and the police seems to have collapsed over the last 6 months with nothing replacing the “York Pride” initiative of a few years ago.

Empty property, fly tipping, fly posting, missing street lamps and ingrained litter all lead to a downward spiral of neglect, that will be more difficult to reverse the longer it is allowed to continue

Leeman Road to get air quality boost?

Click to enlarge

The Council is considering implementing another “Air Quality Management Area” (AQMA). The latest would be in the Leeman Road area and has been prompted by high levels of nitrogen dioxide which have been monitored in Salisbury Terrace, between its junctions with Lincoln Street and Balfour Street.

The Council has discretion over how large an area should be covered by a new AQMA. Only 69 residents (1.2%) responded to a consultation by the Council with the majority of these favouring a wide area zone including Water End (see map).

The declaration of the AQMA means that the Council must take steps to improve the situation within 18 months. As the problem is related to the use of motor vehicles it is possible that some sort of traffic restriction might be introduced. Elsewhere buses and HGVs have been identified as major contributors to problem.

With the Councils policy on introducing low emission buses now in disarray, it is unlikely that any plan to reroute buses away from Leeman Road would be greeted with much enthusiasm by local residents.

A full copy of the report can be found here: http://tinyurl.com/Strategy-12th-April

Consultation responses to Poppleton Park and Ride plans published.

In the main, comments concerned possible increases in “through traffic” in the village particularly during construction work’s. The Council consulted seperately 2 years ago about options for dealing with this although generally proposals for road closures received a mixed reception from local residents.

The design has been revised to address concerns in the Cinder Lane area.

Overall the enlarged roundabout is likely to reduce delays for East to West traffic on the A1237 (ring road). The improvements at the A19 junction eased congestion for traffic travelling in the other direction and the change is the last that is possible without the (huge) expenditure necessary to introduce a split level interchange.

Further details of the Poppleton responses, and reactions from Council officers, can be found here.

http://tinyurl.com/Strategy-12th-April

Revised layout. click to enlarge

Recycling Chaos in Acomb

Andrew and Reuban inspect the overflowing recycling bins


Paper bins full and overflowing

Liberal Democrat campaigners Reuban Mayne and Andrew Waller have hit out at the recycling chaos that is hitting Acomb and Westfield. This weekend the recycling banks in Acomb’s Morrison Supermarket car park have been so overflowing that bottles have been left strewn around and a shopping trolley has acted as an overflow for the paper banks.

The need to empty the banks was reported to the council on Wednesday (Report ref 101721085), and yet they have not responded.

Reuban Mayne said “On the closure notice for Beckfield Lane ‘Tip’ the Labour council is urging residents to come to this supermarket car park to leave their recycling yet they cannot get it right even before it is shut. No wonder the petition has now broken the 3,000 signature barrier – the people can see that a proper recycling site is needed in the West of York.”

Andrew Waller said “It is clear that the council has abandoned ‘York Pride’ standards and is in the process of abandoning Acomb. It is unfair to the supermarket, and it is a hazard having all of this paper and glass around in a car park on a Bank Holiday weekend. This is going to put people off when Front Street it needs all the trade it can get. ”

20 mph speed limit to cover whole of York?

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With the Labour Council keen to implement their manifesto “promises” – no matter what the safety or financial consequences – it seems that they now intend to impose a City-wide 20 mph speed limit.
It is an issue which divides the City although polls reveal that over 65% of residents oppose a blanket speed limit reduction.

At present the council implements what is considered to be the most appropriate speed limit for individual stretches of road. Potential accident risks are taken into account. Most schools and shopping areas now have 20 mph limits. In addition, traffic calming (road humps) were introduced in areas like Foxwood and Gale Lane where accident levels were high.

The policy has contributed to a gradual reduction in the numbers killed or seriously injured on roads in York. Very few of the accidents occurred in residential areas and those that did were distributed on a random basis. In no case could any be traced to an endemic problem with high speeds.

The pros and cons of a blanket reduction in the speed limit have been debated at length. But the most telling point is that the Police have consistently said that they simply don’t have the resources to routinely enforce such a limit. Instead they intend to concentrate their resources on accident black spots. They have had a lot of success with their mobile speed cameras which initially revealed a shocking disregard for the speed limits (60/70 mph) on some of our major roads (the A1237 and the A64 for example).

Against that background a trial of 20 mph zones in various areas was introduced. These included an area in Fishergate and the Milner Street/Gladstone Street area in Acomb. In both cases vehicle speeds were already very low. Continue reading

Askham Bar Park and Ride consultation results

Consultation summary. click to enlarge

62 responses were made to the recent consultation on the design for the new Park and Ride site at Askham Bar.

In the main residents supported the scheme.

One of the main concerns (see right) related to the awkward access for cyclists. This is now to be replaced by a single crossing of the access road.

Good news is that the existing bus stop on the old Park and Ride site will be retained.

Many residents wanted a pedestrian and cycle route via the Tesco site. This has been turned down by officials on cost and safety grounds. There was a similar fate for a suggestion for a split level junction at the College on Tadcaster Road. This was aimed at eliminating the delays caused by the constantly changing Toucan crossing traffic lights.

The report is due to be considered at a meeting on Thursday 12th April (4:30pm Guildhall).The meeting will also consider arrangements at the new Poppleton Park and Ride site as well as a proposal to declare an air quality management area on Salisbury Terrace.

Full reports can be accessed here: http://tinyurl.com/Strategy-12th-April

The proposed revised new layout is shown below

Home and outbuilding security

North Yorkshire Police have issued the following advice: “More than a third of all burglaries are crimes of opportunity, where the burglar enters through unlocked doors or windows. Keep your home secure.
According to the Home Office, you are ten times more likely to be burgled if you don’t have basic security – even something as simple as putting strong locks on your doors and windows will keep your house much safer.

Nationwide, burglary has fallen by nearly 60% since 1995 – but criminals are opportunists who will take advantage of any chance to steal from you, so you should remain aware.
Securing your home

If you want to be certain your home is as safe as you can make it, here are ten top tips you should follow: Continue reading

York’s NHS Walk-in Centre is moving…

York NHS has issued the following statement:

“On Tuesday 17 April the Walk-in Centre will close at the Monkgate site and will reopen as part of the urgent care centre at York Hospital (located in the emergency department) from Wednesday 18 April.
A significant amount of work has been undertaken to design an improved service that will best meet patients’ needs, whilst offering the most effective use of the resources available.
The urgent care centre will help patients to access the right care from the right healthcare professional at the right time. They will also be able to access the range of specialist support services available at the hospital if needed. Health services will also benefit from more streamlined patient pathways.

By separating minor illness and injury from the main emergency department, the emergency department staff will be able to focus their efforts on the most seriously ill patients. The development of the Urgent Care Centre is the first stage in a redesign of the whole service offered by the Emergency Department.

The urgent care centre will be managed by a multidisciplinary team of medical and nursing staff with the skills to see and treat minor illness and injury.

There will be a single reception point and patients will be directed to the urgent care centre or the emergency department depending on their needs.

Other services located in the Monkgate building will continue to operate as normal. Only the walk-in centre is affected by this move”.

www.York.NHS.uk

‘Call-In’ of Clifton Green cycle lane decision

Councillor Keith Hyman, Liberal Democrat spokesman for City Strategy, has joined forces with the two Green Councillors to ‘call-in’ the Labour Cabinet’s decision to scrap a cycle lane.

Labour formally agreed to remove the Clifton Green/Water End cycle lane and reintroduce a left-hand traffic lane this week despite a consultation that saw 106 out of 178 people– together with all three emergency services – say the junction should stay as it is. Council officers have admitted that the changes would make it less safe for cyclists and cost £12,000.

A ‘call-in’ means that the decision can not now be implemented until a further scrutiny debate takes place to look at the reasons why the decision was made.

Cllr Hyman commented:

“To reinstate a left turn lane for motor vehicles puts cyclists and pedestrians at more risk than they are now. The report on the issue shows that the Emergency Services and a Safety Audit of the junction are unanimous in saying that the current layout is the safest.

“I am at a loss as to how the Cabinet can ignore this evidence. I realise they stated in their promises to York that they would alter the junction, but surely having seen the report they should have reconsidered and accepted that the decision they have taken is wrong.

“They should now accept public opinion and expert opinion, swallow their pride, and change their policy.”