Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Further questioning Bristol City Council on green spaces and transport

1 comment:
The question below has been submitted by me to the next full Bristol City Council meeting (13 Jan 2009) for Cllr Rosalie Walker. It follows up on a series of questions I put to the November Cabinet meeting (see B1 on the list if you follow the link) and follows my complaint to the council that official green spaces policy is not being followed.

Note that a 31 page, 13,000 word document of complaint was sent to the Local Government Ombudsman by me this morning saying: that Bristol City Council has not followed its own green spaces policy and procedures; that senior officers have taken ad hoc decisions; that prominent figures with a vested interest in developments have had undue access to officers and influence over decisions; that officers and councillors did not respond adequately and promptly to communications; that the decision on not conducting an environmental impact assessment on the 'cycle house' plans may not have been taken on a proper basis; that dealing with my complaint was consistently delayed, lacking in detail, lacking in references, lacking in explanation and lacking in direct response from those with the most specific expertise; that current consultations are sorely lacking compared to official policy.

I've been compiling this document as the issue has developed over weeks/months and every time I've thought it was complete another relevant development has occurred eg the 'consultation' referred to in the question below (very ably criticised by the Bristol Greengage and Green Bristol Blog).

Q. Consultations have begun over the sale/lease of land on the Bristol to Bath Railway Path to property developers Squarepeg, though the process appears to be a very, very poor substitute for the Area Green Space Plan process laid out in official policy, the Parks and Green Spaces Strategy and appears to focus in much more on the development issue via leading questions than on the land sale/lease: can you explain why the Area GreenSpace Plan process, now underway in several parts of Bristol, was not brought forward for the locality encompassing this land ??

Follow-up questions to Cllr Mark Bradshaw on transport issues in South Bristol also submitted to the same meeting:

Q1. In response to questions I put to the November Cabinet [see C2, C3, C4 on the link] meeting about the South Bristol Link you informed me that estimates of the impact on air pollution and congestion in the Knowle/Brislington area had not been released: what are your thoughts on the importance of information such asthis being made widely available asap during a consultation period??

Q2. In response to questions I put to the November Cabinet meeting you confirmed that you may use Cycling City cash to buy land along the Callington Rd Link (intended to be part of a strategic road network): will cash be returned to the cycling budget if a road is built there??

Further detail on previous green spaces and transport questions here and here.