The programme of repairs to York’s highways network, that will take place during 2021/22, has finally been published. The programme is usually agreed in February. Work has already started on some of the listed schemes.
There is some mixed news in the report which was approved at a “behind closed doors” meeting apparently held on 23rd April.
The highways maintenance programme (which includes not just carriageway and footpath repairs but also drainage, street lighting, City Walls, flood alleviation etc,) is one of the services which most interest residents, the programme has been delegated for officer determination for some years. Thus, the reports are not subject to scrutiny and alternative ways of allocated the budget are not publicly debated.
One key sentence in the report sums up the dilemma faced by the Council.
“Notwithstanding previous levels of investment the current funding levels are not sufficient to keep all our assets in their current condition”.
In effect, the Council has decided to focus resurfacing works on busy roads. Most side roads are being left to crumble.
Some work scheduled for 20/21, including the whole of the micro patching programme in Woodthorpe, has been delayed into the current financial year.
There is some good news.
Several long term problem locations in west York, including parts of Foxwood Lane, Askham Lane near the A1237 intersection, The Green, Bradley Lane near Rufforth, the low numbered end of Gale Lane and Thanet Road are scheduled to be resurfaced this year.
But there is no allocation for repairs on School Street and the surrounding area behind the Front Street shops, nor at many other sub-urban locations.
No footpaths in the Westfield area will be resurfaced.
There is no mention in the programme of the repairs needed to off-road cycle track infrastructure nor is there any listing of how the £1 million delegated “ward budgets” will be spent.
£877,000 of the latter budget, due to be invested last year, is being carried over into the current year. At the very least residents should be given the opportunity to influence how that section of the budget is spent.
All in all its seems that the decline in maintenance standards is set to continue for another year.
This application has not formally been publicised yet, but details are on the Councils planning web site.
If approved it would see the York Bridge Club move from their premises in Holgate into Westfield. As such it would be the first new leisure facility that the area would gain after a decade which has seen the closure of several local amenities including the bowling club, football pitches at Lowfields, the multi user games area etc.
The single storey building itself is unlikely to be controversial but the site selected is currently allocated, in planning documents, as open sports space. It was last used as tennis courts some 20 years ago.
If the Bridge Clubs current premises in Holgate Road were to be converted into residential accommodation, then it is likely that this would weigh in the balance.
Below are the latest planning applications
received by the York Council for the Westfield ward.
Full details can be found by
clicking the application reference
The applications include changes to the layout and mix of properties at the major development site at Lowfields school. It includes details of the “village green” layout and the features to be incorporated there. It also raises the height of the houses at ground to “avoid flooding”. Most of the buildings now incorporate Photovoltaic Cells on their roofs.
Former Lowfield School
Dijon Avenue York
Non-material amendment to planning permission
Ref: 17/02428/FULM – Changes to bedrooms, house types, elevations, PV,
masterplan, FFL’s, Village Green and boundary treatments.