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Roads

MINUTE of MEETING of the ROADS COMMITTEE held in the Town and County Hall, Forfar on Thursday 27 January 2000 at 4.30 pm.

Present: Councillors SANDY WEST, FRANK ELLIS, JOHN HENDERSON, ALEX KING, IAN MACKINTOSH, PETER MURPHY, ROBERT MYLES, HELEN OSWALD, DAVID SELFRIDGE and RICHARD SPEIRS.

Apologies: Apologies for absence were intimated on behalf of Provost Mrs FRANCES E DUNCAN OBE and Councillors STEWART McGLYNN and KITTY RITCHIE.

Councillor WEST, Convener, in the Chair.

1. MINUTE OF PREVIOUS MEETING

The minute of meeting of this Committee of 23 November 1999 was approved as a correct record and signed by the Convener.

2. SAFE ROUTES TO SCHOOL

With reference to Article 13 of the minute of meeting of this Committee of 11 June 1998, there was submitted Report No 97/00 by the Director of Roads updating the Committee with regard to the progress being made on the Safe Routes to School initiative and considering in particular the results of the pilot study carried out at Grange Primary School, Monifieth and Arbroath High School.

Having heard various members welcome the initiative and its extension to other schools in Angus, the Committee agreed:-

  1. to note the results of the pilot study, carried out on Safe Routes to School at Grange Primary School, Monifieth and Arbroath High School;
  2. to authorise the Director of Roads to present the results of the pilot study to parents, pupils and teachers at both schools;
  3. to authorise the Director of Roads to proceed with the following measures:-
    1. provision of localised footway widening with appropriate signing and lining on Cairnie Road, Arbroath;
    2. improvement of the footpath between Cairnie Road and Keptie Road, Arbroath;
    3. provision of a new cycle track from Lochlands Drive to Arbroath High School;
    4. provision of a new footway/cycle track through McDonald Park, Arbroath;
    5. provision of new road markings on Lochlands Drive, Arbroath;
    6. widening of the footway to provide a cycle track/footway and provision of additional signing and lining on Keptie Road, Arbroath;
    7. in liaison with the Director of Education, the provision of better cycle storage facilities at Arbroath High School, subject to adequate resources being available;
    8. further consideration of improvements to walking/cycling facilities in the Hercules Den and Timmergreens areas of Arbroath;
    9. in liaison with the Director of Education, the provision of a new access at Grange Primary School, Monifieth subject to adequate resources being available; and
    10. investigation as to whether pupils at Grange Primary School could be encouraged to cycle to school safely;
  4. to form a Working Group to assist in the development of the Safe Routes to School Project and its extension to all Angus schools; and
  5. to note that a further Report would be presented to a future Committee with recommendations regarding the extension of the Safe Routes to School Project to the remainder of the schools in Angus.

3. SUSTRANS NATIONAL CYCLE ROUTE/NORTH SEA CYCLE ROUTE

With reference to Article 3 of the minute of meeting of this Committee of 28 January 1999, there was submitted Report No 98/00 by the Director of Roads giving an update on the Sustrans National Cycle Route and the North Sea Cycle Route, both of which ran along the same alignment through Angus and recommending the promotion of an Order to convert certain lengths of footway along the routes to segregated shared pedestrian and cycle use.

Having heard various members on the need for adequate signage on shared use footways, the Committee agreed:-

  1. to note the present situation with regard to the development of the national/international cycle routes which passed through Angus; and
  2. to the promotion of the necessary Order under the Roads (Scotland) Act 1984 to convert lengths of footway in Arbroath and Montrose to segregated shared pedestrian/cycle use.

4. A92 PROJECT ­ PLANNING PROCESS PROGRESS

There was submitted Joint Report No 100/00 by the Director of Roads and the Director of Law and Administration advising the Committee of the progress which had been made to date in respect of the statutory planning process associated with the development of the A92 Project. The Report indicated that planning permission for the A92 Project, in relation to two Notices of Intention to Develop (NIDs) for road alignment, was now deemed to have been granted by the Scottish Ministers, as outlined in the letters appended to the Report. Procedures associated with other various Orders were still in the process of consideration by the Scottish Executive.

The Committee agreed to note that notification had recently been received that planning permission for the A92 Project was deemed to have been granted by the Ministers of the Scottish Parliament for the full length of the project in the areas of both Angus Council and Dundee City Council.

5. SURFACING OF THREE UNADOPTED LINK FOOTPATHS OFF DUNDEE ROAD, FORFAR

With reference to Article 14 of the minute of meeting of the Policy and Resources Committee of 7 September 1999, there was submitted Report No 102/00 by the Director of Roads proposing, in accordance with the Council’s policy on unadopted footways and footpaths, the surfacing of three unadopted link footpaths off Dundee Road, Forfar and recommending that the works be financed from Forfar Common Good.

The Committee, for its interest, agreed:-

  1. to the surfacing of three unadopted link footpaths as detailed in the Report;
  2. to the surfacing work being financed from Forfar Common Good Fund; and
  3. that, on completion of the work, procedures necessary to allow the addition of these footpaths to the list of public roads be put in hand.

6. CARSEVIEW ROAD, FORFAR

The Committee agreed to defer consideration of this item to allow the opportunity for further consultation.

7. ARBROATH HIGH STREET IMPROVEMENTS ­ PHASE 3

With reference to Article 7 of the minute of meeting of the Planning and Transport Committee held earlier this day, there was submitted Joint Report No 87/00 (16K) by the Director of Planning and Transport and the Director of Roads updating the Committee on the outcome of public consultation undertaken on the proposed environmental improvements to the pedestrian precinct as Phase 3 of the Arbroath High Street Improvements and setting out the proposed programme for the implementation of the project.

The Committee, for its interest, agreed:-

  1. to note the outcome of the public consultation exercise in relation to the proposed environmental improvements to the pedestrian precinct at Arbroath High Street;
  2. to note the financial implications of proceeding with the works; and
  3. to authorise the Director of Roads to seek competitive tenders for the works.

8. ARBROATH SIGNAGE STRATEGY

With reference to Article 6 of the minute of meeting of the Planning and Transport Policy Committee held earlier this day, there was submitted Joint Report No 88/00 (18K) by the Director of Planning and Transport and the Director of Roads outlining the proposed Signage Strategy for Arbroath as a key element in the Arbroath Economic and Environmental Strategy and detailing in the Appendices various options for tourist signs.

The Committee, for its interest, agreed:-

  1. to approve the Signage Strategy for Arbroath as outlined in the Report;
  2. to contribute up to £10,000 towards the cost of the Signage Strategy, the expenditure being met from the Planning Department’s Capital Programme for 1999/2000 financial year; and
  3. to maintain the new signage provided, the cost of which would be contained within the Roads Department’s Revenue Budget.

9. ARBROATH ABBEY DEVELOPMENT ­ TRAFFIC ARRANGEMENTS

With reference to Article 16 of the minute of meeting of the Planning and Transport Policy Committee held earlier this day, there was submitted Joint Report No 104/00 by the Director of Roads and the Director of Planning and Transport updating the Committee with regard to the proposed traffic management arrangements for Abbey Path (which had been brought about by the proposed closure of the Abbey Arch) and also considering parking arrangements for Arbroath Abbey.

Having heard Councillor King, the local member, on the need to minimise disruption to traffic, the Committee agreed:-

  1. to the promotion of a Traffic Regulation Order to allow all traffic to proceed in an easterly direction up Abbey Path, and to permit only buses to proceed in a westerly direction down Abbey Path;
  2. to the provision of traffic signals for the pedestrian phase at the junction of Abbey Path and High Street to ensure the safe movement of vehicles and pedestrians; and
  3. to the promotion of a Traffic Order to make the car park at North Port subject to a maximum stay of two hours.

10. TRAFFIC ORDERS

(a) Variation of Speed Limits

There was submitted Report No 112/00 by the Director of Roads proposing, for reasons of pedestrian and traffic safety, the alteration of current speed limits at North Craigo, Strathmartine, Trinity by Brechin and Balkeerie.

The Committee agreed to effect changes to speed limits as follows:-

  1. Strathmartine Village by Tealing ­ 60 mph to 30 mph;
  2. Trinity Village by Brechin ­ 50 mph to 40 mph;
  3. North Craigo by Montrose ­ 60 mph to 40 mph; and
  4. Balkeerie Village by Glamis ­ 60 mph to 30 mph.

(b) Temporary Traffic Orders

With reference to Article 6(f) of the minute of meeting of this Committee of 23 November 1999, there was submitted Report No 105/00 (6K) by the Director of Law and Administration advising that, at the request of the Director of Roads, the undernoted Temporary Traffic Orders had been made:-

  1. Angus Council (High Street and Murray Street, Montrose) (Temporary Prohibition of Driving) Order 1999 ­ for 7 hours on 12 December 1999 in connection with a Christmas Extravaganza;
  2. Angus Council (The Den, Letham) (Temporary Prohibition of Driving) Order 1999 ­ for six weeks from 29 November 1999 for the purpose of installing a replacement water main;
  3. Angus Council (High Street, Brechin) (Temporary Prohibition of Driving) Order 1999 ­ for 6 hours on 18 December 1999 in connection with a Christmas Extravaganza; and
  4. Angus Council (A935 Forfar Road, Brechin) (Temporary Prohibition of Driving) Order 2000 ­ for six weeks from 17 January 2000 for the purpose of installing a new sewer connection.

(c) Angus Council (Fowlis Village) (Stopping-Up) Order 1999

With reference to Article 12(b) of the minute of meeting of this Committee of 11 March 1999, there was submitted Report No 113/00 (6K) by the Director of Law and Administration relating to the stopping-up of two sections of road in Fowlis Village which were no longer required due to a housing development for which a new section of road had been provided. The Report advised that, following advertisement of the above Order, no objections had been received and recommended that the Council should proceed to confirm the Order.

The Committee agreed to recommend that the Council now make and confirm the Order authorising the stopping-up of two sections of road in Fowlis Village.

11. ASSESSMENT OF ROAD BRIDGES IN THE ANGUS COUNCIL AREA IN THE OWNERSHIP OF RAILTRACK AND RAIL PROPERTY LTD ­ UPDATE

With reference to Article 10 of the minute of meeting of this Committee of 6 June 1999, there was submitted Report No 101/00 by the Director of Roads advising the Committee that there were currently twenty six unassessed road bridges in the ownership of either Railtrack or Rail Property Ltd carrying public roads in Angus. The Report updated the Committee on the current position regarding assessment of the bridges and included information from the SCOTS Bridges Working Group which had carried out a national survey of this issue.

The Committee agreed:-

  1. to note the current position in Angus and elsewhere in Scotland; and
  2. to progress outstanding assessments of privately owned bridges carrying public roads in Angus, with any commitment to expenditure required in consequence of such assessments being subject to a further report.

12. REPLACEMENT OF MONTROSE BRIDGE

There was submitted Report No 106/00 by the Director of Roads describing, in summary, the current condition of the existing road bridge (A92) crossing the River South Esk at Montrose. The Report set out the options for providing continuity of this vital transport link and highlighted the necessity for the procurement of a replacement crossing within an estimated five year period. The Report also set out funding difficulties which this would present to the Council and recommended that this aspect be conveyed to the Minister of Finance and, via COSLA, to the Scottish Executive in their consideration of the forthcoming comprehensive spending review.

Having heard various members in support of the procurement of a replacement bridge over the River South Esk at Montrose, the Committee agreed:-

  1. to note the current condition of the existing road bridge over the South Esk at Montrose (A92);
  2. that there was a need to replace the road crossing within an estimated period of five years which was considered to be the economic serviceable life expectancy of the existing structure;
  3. to instruct the Director of Roads to continue with the procurement process as set out in detail in the Report;
  4. to note that the Scottish Executive (then Scottish Office) did not provide for any additional "notional loan charge support" to allow the replacement crossing to be funded as part of the A92 dualling Arbroath to Dundee project;
  5. to note the implications for the Council’s Financial Plan as described in the financial implications of the Report, should no other additional funding from other sources be available or forthcoming;
  6. that the Chief Executive write to the Minister of Finance setting out the special needs of the project and requesting that consideration be given to the treatment of it as a vital lifeline project; and
  7. to instruct the Director of Finance, in consultation with the Director of Roads, to write to COSLA requesting that, in discussion with the Scottish Executive on the topic of the forthcoming capital funding review, the case be made for a mechanism to be established for funding of such "lifeline" projects having a significantly large cost, this being a particular issue for those projects required by small and medium sized local authorities.

13. EXCLUSION OF PUBLIC AND PRESS

The Committee resolved, in terms of Standing Order 27(2), that the public and press be excluded during consideration of the following items so as to avoid the disclosure of information which was exempt in terms of Part 1 of Schedule 7A to the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1973, paragraphs 6, 8 and 9.

14. MONTROSE BRIDGE REPLACEMENT ­ AWARD OF STAGE 1 COMMISSION

With reference to Article 12 above, there was submitted Report No 107/00 by the Director of Roads recommending, in accordance with Financial Regulation 14.1.3(c), the appointment of a consultant to assist the Council in progressing the procurement of a replacement for the Montrose Bridge.

The Committee agreed:-

  1. to note the submission received from the Babtie Group (Consulting Engineers) to undertake the work set out in the Stage 1 Commission associated with the progression of a replacement of the Montrose Bridge; and
  2. to approve the appointment of the Babtie Group on the basis of the submission and in accordance with clause 14.1.3(c) of the Council’s Financial Regulations to undertake the Stage 1 Commission.

15. ACCEPTANCE OF TENDERS

(a) Park Road Railway Bridge (MA21), Brechin

With reference to Article 15(a) of the minute of meeting of this Committee of 26 August 1999, there was submitted Report No 108/00 by the Director of Roads giving details of tenders received for the Park Road Railway Bridge (MA21) works. The basic elements of the project would involve the infilling of the existing disused railway bridge and provision of a pedestrian culvert through one of the arches.

The Committee agreed to approve the acceptance of the lowest conforming bid tender for the Park Road Railway Bridge (MA21) being that submitted by Alex Butter & Sons in the amount of £61,893.94.

(b) U392/1 Kinnaird Bridge Deck Replacement

With reference to Article 8 of the minute of meeting of this Committee of 27 August 1998, there was submitted Report No 109/00 by the Director of Roads giving details of tenders received for the U392/1 Kinnaird Bridge Deck Replacement Works. The basic elements of the project would involve the demolition and replacement of the existing deck which was heavily corroded and the strengthening of the existing masonry abutments and provision of new bearings.

The Committee agreed to approve the acceptance of the lowest tender for the U392/1 Kinnaird Bridge Deck Replacement Works being that submitted by D A Kennedy (Construction) Ltd in the amount of £103,864.50.

16. SELECTION OF CONTRACTORS FOR THE CONSTRUCTION OF ARBROATH HIGH STREET IMPROVEMENTS PHASE 3 ­ PRECINCT SECTION

There was submitted Report No 110/00 by the Director of Roads advising that, in response to an advertisement, expressions of interest had been received from seven firms for inclusion on a Select List of Contractors to tender for the construction of the Arbroath High Street Improvements Phase 3, Precinct Section. It was recommended that six of the firms were best able to provide the required combination of quality of service and competitive prices to ensure Best Value.

The Committee agreed to approve the selection of six contractors to be invited to tender for the contract as listed in Appendix 3 to the Report.

17. TAY PREMIUM UNIT (TPU) CONSORTIUM ­ PROPOSED PARTNERSHIP ARRANGEMENTS FOR PRIVATE SECTOR FOR BIDDING FOR NEXT ROUND OF CONTRACTS FOR TRUNK ROAD MANAGEMENT/MAINTENANCE

There was submitted Report No 99/00 by the Director of Roads detailing the latest position on arrangements which would be required to allow Angus Council to participate in a Councils' Consortium/Private Sector partnership arrangement with respect to the advertisement by the Scottish Executive in the "Government Opportunities" Contract Journal for expressions of interest for contracts for trunk road management/maintenance (commencing April 2001) to be submitted by 11 February 2000.

The Committee agreed:-

  1. to note that the Scottish Executive intended to amalgamate the existing North-East Scotland All-Purpose Trunk Road Unit with the Tay Premium Trunk Road Operating Unit into a single all-encompassing Trunk Road Maintenance and Management Unit;
  2. to note that the member Councils represented within this new enhanced unit had been increased from seven to nine and that the unit now included Trunk routes within Angus, Dundee, Perth & Kinross, Stirling, Fife, Aberdeenshire, Aberdeen City, Moray and Highland;
  3. to note that Officers of all those Councils associated with the current contract were of the view that some form of private sector involvement would be a prerequisite to successfully gaining inclusion on the tender list for the renewal contracts;
  4. to note that following a brief press release on 24 December 1999 the Scottish Executive outlined their response to "The Road Ahead" consultation document, and that essentially four new units (NE, NW, SE, SW) would be set up to replace the existing three Premium and five All Purpose Trunk Road Units;
  5. to note that organisations interested in tendering for the "new" contracts required to express a notification of interest/outline methodology by 11 February 2000;
  6. to note that a Sub-Group of the Tay Premium Unit Management Board had advertised, interviewed and assessed four private sector consultants with a view to selecting the most appropriate private sector consultancy partner to enter into a partnership for the new NE Trust Route contract;
  7. to note that Mouchel Consulting was the preferred private sector consultant for partnering as they currently operated the NE Scotland All Purpose Unit which was to be amalgamated within the existing Tay Premium Unit;
  8. to submit an application and pre-qualification questionnaire to the Scottish Executive in conjunction with the eight partner Councils and Mouchel Consulting with respect to the NE Unit; and
  9. to authorise the Director of Roads to take all appropriate decisions pertinent to the tendering arrangements for the new contract, subject to frequent reporting to Committee.

18. ROADS DEPARTMENT ­ REVIEW OF ESTABLISHMENT AND STRUCTURE

With reference to Article 17 of the minute of meeting of this Committee of 1 December 1998, there was submitted Joint Report No 111/00 by the Director of Roads and the Director of Personnel detailing a proposal for amendments to the Roads Department Establishment and Structure brought about by improvements to Best Value processes, the introduction of the "Hilight" computerised street lighting management system and generally a realignment of staffing resources to support the delivery of cost effective services.

The Committee, for its interest, agreed to note and approve the terms of the Report.

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