Bad news for local traders on the bottom of the Cally Road as the council proposes taking away some of the the single yellow lines to be replaced by double yellows. There are two single yellow sections – opposite each mid-way between Wharfdale Road and Balfe Street. But a baffling notice from LB Islington on lamp posts (below) is alarming people and makes it hard to understand what is going on (see update below).
It’s an odd one this – Islington has a slightly unfashionable policy of making it easier for local people to use their cars for short shopping etc journeys across the borough, the so-called ‘Residents Roamer‘ ‘making it easier for you to shop locally or visit friends and family’ and the debate around this in 2011 was in part in the name of supporting local businesses. And one of the purposes returning two way working to a section of the Cally Road always seemed to be to humanise a space dedicated to thundering road traffic at the expense of pedestrians and other road users. So taking away short stop parking spaces for loading etc outside local homes and businesses in the name of smoothing traffic flow would be a bit odd.
The bottom part of the Cally has a number of small businesses that cling on in, at times difficult conditions. Tony Rees who runs a shop and lives in this bit of the road there has written to Cllr Convery about the proposed parking changes:
‘This will prohibit all parking, loading or unloading outside our homes and businesses at any time. This was never mentioned when the two way proposal was put forward, we would have vigorously opposed it if it had, and we can see no justification for it now. This is a fundamental change that will affect all the residents and businesses on our side of the road. It needs to be discussed properly with the council putting forward irrefutable evidence of the need for this change, not slipping it through with a load of other minor alterations across the borough. Can you please look into this for us and let us know exactly why the council think this change is necessary, and ensure the local community is properly consulted.’
The consultation notice is a masterpiece of statutory notice gobbledegook, with no illustrative map nor context:
And they wonder why people don’t get engaged in local decision making. I understand that there is somewhere a consultation notice – when I get that I shall post it here. From a brief chat with a council officer I understand that this is part of the ‘post implementation review’ of two way working. If anyone could give us chapter and verse on this it would be welcome – there’s nothing on the council website. To declare an interest I own a small flat in this section of the road.
In the comments, Cllr Convery helpfully says:
‘ In plain language, it’s proposed to stop parking in the (newly restored) northbound lane of Caledonian Road. Now that Caledonian Road has 2 way working, vehicles parked in the northbound lane are an obstacle to northbound traffic. Vehicles and cyclists have to pull over potentially into oncoming southbound traffic. The Council is proposing to stop parking in the northbound lane to remove that risk.’
In parking-speak this is ‘waiting’ stopping your car and leaving it there. This is different to ‘loading’ when you stop for deliveries etc. LBI Officers have sent a map:
The map seems to confirm this but also proposes that loading in peak times is also restricted – which is painful if you are expecting a delivery. Both these restrictions are corollary to the return of the Cally to two way traffic but weren’t advertised at the time – I am still not clear how a consultation on these changes is supposed to work – where the council provides evidence that the problem is severe enough to warrant these changes etc. and listens to what people have to say. The statutory notice though says you can write to Public Realm, 1 Cottage Road N7 8TP quoting reference TMO/4399.