Discussions over implementing 20mph zones on multiple roads in the Salmestone and Dane Valley areas of Margate and approving consultation over safety measures in Northdown Road are due to take place next week.
Members on the Joint Transportation Board have been advised to approve a traffic regulation order for the 20mph areas, although documents say money for the installation must be found first.
The scheme would encompass residential roads including those outside Salmestone, Drapers Mills and St Gregory’s schools and roads off from Victoria traffic lights – not inclusive of Star Lane and College Road between Ramsgate Road and St Peters Road. Part of the zone covers the Hornby model factory and museum area.
Salmestone Residents’ Association carried out an informal consultation in 2019 which showed 94% of respondents in favour of the 20mph speed limit.
County Councillor Barry Lewis requested the scheme and gained an ‘in principle’ agreement last year.
Surveys were undertaken in a sample of roads in September 2021 and these showed the average speed of drivers was around 24mph.
Casualty analysis for the affected roads shows that in the three years up to 30/06/22, there has been one personal injury crash where excessive speed is shown to have been a contributory factor in Tivoli Road at Alexandra Road.
There were also four personal injury crashes involving pedestrians, described as three slight and one serious incident. One of the slight injury crashes involved a four-year-old outside a school. There was one crash involving a motorcycle which resulted in serious injury.
The 20mph proposal was advertised during July and August this year with consultation resulting in 66 responses: 35 in support and 31 against.
Some of those against the idea said it would cause congestion, wasn’t needed and would be wasting money. There were also concerns that the speed limit would be ignored and not enforced.
The scheme will cost some £50,000 to implement.
A report to councillors says: “It is recommended that the TRO for the speed limit be made as advertised, pending confirmed identification of funding for the signs and road markings within the statutory 24 month period.”
Cllr Lewis said: “Hopefully members of the Joint Transportation Board will agree to discuss and pass it to the next stage.”
Northdown Road pedestrian safety measures
The board is also asked to approve a public consultation over measures to be taken in Northdown Road which include parking bay changes, enlarged footpath with a new pedestrian crossing and other alterations to improve pedestrian safety.
During the past ten years, up until March 2021, there were 49 collisions in the area reported to the police where a pedestrian was injured. The KCC proposal is to make improvements aimed to reduce risks caused by the road and path layout.
- Changes will be made on Clifton Road and St Paul’s Road with a reduction of ‘at any time’ waiting restrictions – double yellow lines. At Arthur Road the existing parking bays will be cut in size and moved near to the junction with the footway widened to allow buses to pull up close to and parallel to the kerb. T
- On Wilderness Hill the existing parking bay will be extended and the ‘give way’ line moved forward to give better visibility for drivers turning out of the junction.
- Also by Wilderness Hill the existing bay will be extended and a new footway build-out will be created on the southern side along with dropped kerbs for pedestrian crossing points on both sides. The kerbs at the bus stop will also be raised.
- By Edgar Road the footway will be enlarged in front of St Paul’s Church and a pedestrian crossing point created set back into the side road.
- In Northdown Road dropped kerbs will be replaced with raised bus stop kerbs and the existing pedestrian crossing point removed.
- By Sweyn Road it is proposed to extend the wider part of the footway southwards to discourage drivers from stopping and blocking visibility for pedestrians.
- By Godwin Road the dropped kerbs would be replaced with raised bus stop kerbs.
- Again in Northdown Road a build-out footway would be removed, and parking bays joined with dropped kerbs being replaced by raised bus stop kerbs.
- By Prices Avenue and Harold Road the existing pedestrian guard railing would be extended by two 2 metre lengths.
- By Lyndhurst Avenue and Warwick Road the existing centre islands would be removed from the zebra crossing.
The scheme will be paid for by KCC’s Crash Remedial Measures fund. During the works, alternative routes would be provided for pedestrians with barriers and ramps for those with visual and mobility impairments.
However, it is possible that members of the Joint Transportation Board will boycott any discussion of the two items if a Kent County Council officer does not attend the meeting.
At the last meeting in October angry councillors said they were refusing to approve any more Kent County Council road schemes until an officer turns up at meetings.
The board is a forum for county and district councillors to discuss highway issues. But since the covid pandemic there has been no attendance from county council officers.
The board at that meeting had been due to discuss the Northdown Road consultation but members said it was impossible to move forward with no officer present to answer questions about the scheme.
Cllr Linda Wright, who is a member for KCC, suggested an upgrade to Thanet council’s system to allow officers to attend remotely.
Members were told Thanet could not live stream for the public and host a stream for remote attendance at the same time and any upgrade would come at “substantial” cost.
Cllr Phil Fellows moved a decision for the committee to agree “not to progress any KCC items on the agenda if no-one wants to come and talk about it.”
The meeting is due to take place on November 13.