The Committee would like to invite questions from the public present at the meeting. The Committee would encourage members of the public with more complex issues to submit their question before the meeting to allow a substantive answer to be given.
31.1 The Chairman introduced the item and advised that the open forum was an opportunity for comments and questions to be raised over areas which the County Council has a reasonable interest. The following issues were raised and responses made.
• A resident queried the time taken to resolve the flooding in the Broadfield underpass. – Mr Lambarth, Area Highway Manager, explained that the pumps had failed and the delay in repair was due to part availability. Officers were looking at future preventative works.
• A resident raised concerns with the lack of enforcement for areas such as littering, fly tipping and parking. Concerns were also raised with the lack of strategy to stop these incidents from occurring. – Members explained that enforcement was a responsibility of the Borough Council and that Community Wardens were in place for enforcement. The County Council’s Highways Department liaised with the Borough Council to monitor highways enforcement. Members highlighted that Community Initiative Funding had been used to support a litter campaign in Broadfield. Mr Jones, Mrs Burgess and Mr Quinn agreed to liaise with the resident to investigate the key areas and highlight key areas of concern to the Borough Council.
• A resident raised concerns about a local business that was repairing cars on the highway and sought clarity on whether a car on jacks would be considered ‘parked’. – Members explained that they were aware of the situation and that it had been passed to the Borough Council. Mr Lambarth explained that elements that were breaching the law would be for the Borough Council to enforce, but reported that he was unclear on the legal definition of a car on jacks. Mr Jones agreed to liaise with the resident on this issue and would encourage the Borough Council to take ownership.
• A resident queried the plans for the Telford Place site and the impact it would have on an oak tree. – The question had been submitted in advance and so officers were able to provide a detailed response which explained that the development proposals for Telford Place and any changes to the surrounding highway network were currently in development by Crawley Borough Council’s appointed development partner and their consultants. West Sussex County Council as Highway Authority would be engaged in the process as a statutory consultee through the planning process. When a planning application was submitted residents would have the opportunity to comment upon the proposals and raise any concerns they may have.
• A resident raised concerns about rough sleepers blocking fire doors and asked if functionality could be added to Love West Sussex to report these types of concerns. – Members commented that business owners had the responsibility to ensure fire regulations were being upheld. Mr Lambarth resolved to look into the functionality of Love West Sussex for the requested purpose.
• A resident raised concerns on the condition of Forge Road. The resident was not happy with the quality of the repairs to potholes and the fragments left on the road after repairs. – Mr Lambarth confirmed that Forge Road was on the list for resurfacing and was waiting on funding. Mrs Burgess agreed to liaise with Mr Lambarth on progress and would look into the issue of road fragments.
• A business owner in Spindle Way raised concerns about people parking on the turning circle which was impacting business deliveries. There were also concerns about vehicles in the area that were not taxed; these had been reported to the Police – Members discussed the issue and were aware of requests to extend the current yellow lines. Mr Lambarth explained that the Crawley Parking Plan was being developed and it was currently anticipated that more information would be available in the summer. A request for a Traffic Regulation Order could be another option. Mrs Burgess agreed to liaise with the resident on the issue.
• A resident highlighted the dangers at Cheals Roundabout with the lack of streetlights and the current flooding. – Mr Lambarth explained that UK Power Networks had faults in the area that required works to resolve. Road space for this would not be permitted until the Pease Pottage works were completed. The issues with drainage had been logged. Members queried why the bespoke lane works had not been done on both sides of the roundabout. Mr Lambarth explained that the works had been completed by a developer and only the west lane had been included in the brief.