ModernGov

Agenda and draft minutes

Venue: Zoom - to be streamed live to Youtube.

Items
No. Item

1.

Questions from the public

This session is limited to 30 minutes.

 

1.            From Mrs M Lawes to Councillor Godfrey, Cabinet Member for Housing, Transport and Special Projects

 

New measures were taken in early June to stop all BBQ’s in the Coastal Park. These measures included larger bins, increased parking charges at Radnor Cliff Road and coastal parking area. There were also signs indicating to drivers to use Folkestone end of Coastal Park. Parking has been seriously reduced at Folkestone end due to the Seafront Development. This has led to serious overcrowding. People parking over resident driveways, blocking cars in on residential roads complete gridlock for months in Tram Road.  Why was this decision taken to send traffic to Folkestone end when traffic already caused serious problems to residents, ruining local resident’s enjoyment of the seafront?

 

Minutes:

 

1.    From Mrs M Lawes to Councillor Godfrey, Cabinet Member for Housing, Transport and Special Projects

 

New measures were taken in early June to stop all BBQ’s in the Coastal Park. These measures included larger bins, increased parking charges at Radnor Cliff Road and coastal parking area. There were also signs indicating to drivers to use Folkestone end of Coastal Park. Parking has been seriously reduced at Folkestone end due to the Seafront Development. This has led to serious overcrowding. People parking over resident driveways, blocking cars in on residential roads complete gridlock for months in Tram Road.  Why was this decision taken to send traffic to Folkestone end when traffic already caused serious problems to residents, ruining local resident’s enjoyment of the seafront?

 

          ANSWER:

 

Thank you Mrs Lawes for your question.

 

We are aware that this summer has been exceptionally busy in all seafront locations, so the increased traffic/parking in Folkestone should not be solely attributed to the Coastal Park traffic diversion. Many other coastal towns have also reported similar challenges.

 

There have been traffic/parking issues on roads leading to the Coastal Park which have grown over the past few years.  It is a fact that the location of the Coastal Park and nature of the roads leading to it make it difficult for cars and emergency vehicles to access/leave the facility during periods of high demand.

 

The Folkestone Harbour end has wider roads, and even with the seafront development, it has far more parking facilities for visitors. To further alleviate the situations, FHDC made arrangements with the Folkestone Harbour Company to open up their large car park on sunny days when high demand for parking was expected. This helped to reduce the parking congestion on the roads.

 

Officers are currently working on the possible introduction of parking controls in the Tram Road area, which should help alleviate the parking difficulties local residents are experiencing. However, there will be sunny weekends when the attractions of Folkestone to outside visitors will inevitably create difficulties from time to time.

 

The Coastal Park, which is an exceptional asset in the district, witnessed an unprecedented amount of visitors this summer due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The council undertook a considerable amount of work to update rules, change behaviours and suitably enforce these. One of the predominant issues was the route into the coastal park via Radnor Cliff. Despite long queues people still attempted to enter and this led to a blocking off of the road. Emergency services expressed their concern and the decision was made to advertise the less well known (to visitors of the coastal park) Folkestone end car parks. Despite an increase in traffic being sent to the Folkestone end, roads are wider and more suitable to larger volumes. This coincided with working with the harbour company to open their large car parks during peak times to alleviate the numbers.

 

We are aware that residents of the Folkestone end did witness an increase in unacceptable behaviour. To help ease matters in  ...  view the full minutes text for item 1.

2.

Questions from Councillors

This session is limited to 45 minutes.

 

1.         From Councillor Whybrow to Councillor Collier, Cabinet Member for Property Management and Grounds Maintenance

 

Can you please set out the steps that are being taken to make sure that the contamination at our development sites at Ship St and Biggins Wood is properly dealt with so that the health of future residents is not put at risk?

 

2.         From Councillor Keen to Councillor Peall, Cabinet Member for Enforcement, Regulatory Services, Waste and Building Control

 

The sea front development is causing a lot of concern to the residents in the area.  During the hot weather we had recently, the dust in the air was stifling and when there is a breeze their homes and cars get covered in dust.

 

Could I ask the leader to make available, to the ward councillors, the environmental reading from the area and that FHDC ask that the councillors whose wards are affected by the site are invited to visit the site?

 

This development is causing a lot of concern in the Harbour area and people are concerned at the amount of dust that is getting into their property  and the air quality and noise in the area. They are also concerned that this is just the beginning and that their lives are going to be made unbearable as the development makes progress.

 

3.    From Councillor Meade to Councillor Godfrey, Cabinet Member for Housing, Transport and Special Projects

 

I have received reports and information from local shopkeepers, in the Rendezvous Street area, that elderly residents who visit their shops are now having to park further up the town due to the introduction of mobile phone ticketing only parking, that seems to have appeared in several of the lower town car parks. This is already adversely affecting both the businesses and residents alike. Elderly residents in particular (but not in isolation) are the most likely of residents to either not have mobile phones or understand how the system works. Can you confirm whether these lower car parks such as Players Park are becoming mobile pay only as I believe this is discrimination via technology and should be resisted by this council?

 

4.      From Councillor Meade to Councillor Collier, Cabinet Member for Property Management and Grounds Maintenance

 

          As we are now all being encouraged by the Government to return to our workplaces, can you please advise what measures are being put into place to allow council staff to attend their place of work, albeit with self-distancing in place, to enable the residents who have no internet access, to gain assistance and indeed when councillors will be able to return to the Council Chambers for full Public Meetings?

 

5.      From Councillor Davison to Councillor Mrs Hollingsbee, Deputy Leader, and Cabinet Member for Communities

 

          What is being done to relieve the pressure on local GP services, following closures of two surgeries?

 

6.      From Councillor Keutenius to Councillor Mrs Hollingsbee, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Communities

 

          Please can we have the total  ...  view the full agenda text for item 2.

Minutes:

 

1.         From Councillor Whybrow to Councillor Monk, Leader of the Council

 

Can you please set out the steps that are being taken to make sure that the contamination at our development sites at Ship St and Biggins Wood is properly dealt with so that the health of future residents is not put at risk?

 

ANSWER:

 

Thank you for your question.

 

In 2016 Idom Mererbrook (Environmental Consultant) carried out a site appraisal with regard to the contamination at the former Gas Works and in 2017 at Biggins Wood.

 

Biggins Wood

Following on from the initial assessment, Idom Merebrook will be asked to carry out further assessments and ground tests in order to design the remediation strategy. This will take place once contractual agreements for the development of the site are complete. Following the new assessment a remediation programme of works will be undertaken which will also include ecological activities to safeguard wildlife. It is anticipated that clean soil will then be used for a capping layer over the remediated ground.

 

The Former Gas Works, Ship Street

The environmental assessment report detailed the condition of the site and the necessary remediation works. Once this site is within FHDC ownership, a design process will begin which will rely on the 2016 assessment and develop it further to take account of the proposed design. A remediation strategy would then be developed under the supervision of an environmental specialist. The strategy is then implemented through appropriate contractors who would then remediate the site to safeguard future residents and the wider public.

 

SUPPLEMENTARY QUESTION

 

Given that nobody really knows what is buried under Princes Parade, how can you be confident that there will be no risk from contamination to future residents of the proposed development there?

 

          ANSWER:

 

We have done some preliminary contamination tests, and of course those remarks about Ship Street and Biggins Wood will of course apply to Princes Parade.

 

2.         From Councillor Keen to Councillor Peall, Cabinet Member for Enforcement, Regulatory Services, Waste and Building Control

 

The sea front development is causing a lot of concern to the residents in the area.  During the hot weather we had recently, the dust in the air was stifling and when there is a breeze their homes and cars get covered in dust.

 

Could I ask the leader to make available, to the ward councillors, the environmental reading from the area and that FHDC ask that the councillors whose wards are affected by the site are invited to visit the site?

 

This development is causing a lot of concern in the Harbour area and people are concerned at the amount of dust that is getting into their property and the air quality and noise in the area. They are also concerned that this is just the beginning and that their lives are going to be made unbearable as the development makes progress.

 

ANSWER:

 

Thank you for your question.

 

The Council has been investigating the allegation of excessive dust coming from the site and Environmental Protection Specialists  ...  view the full minutes text for item 2.