DfT gives partial clarification after shared space injunction

 

The Government has clarified certain aspects of its injunction against level surface shared space schemes, although designers and local planners still feel the situation is in limbo.

The Department for Transport's recent Inclusive Mobility Strategy called for local authorities to 'pause the development of shared space schemes, which incorporate a level surface while we review and update guidance'.

In reaction many involved in urban design took to Twitter to suggest the blanket temporary ban went too far and provided so little clarification it could prevent a whole ream of road infrastructure. The Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation (CIHT) called for an explanatory note on the issue.

Urban designer, Phil Jones, of Phil Jones Associates, who helped write a recent report on shared space from the CIHT said the move was in danger of throwing the 'baby out with the bathwater'.

He raised concerns that design aspects such as continuous footways, home zones and tabled junctions might be banned under the DfT's wording.

Responding to questions by Transport Network on these and other aspects, DfT officials gave a partial clarification.

They told Transport Network that local authorities were being asked to pause the introduction of new shared space schemes, which incorporate a level surface, and which are at the design stage and it is for authorities and their designers to consider if any aspects of schemes they are planning fall into this description.

The briefing notes passed to Transport Network then go on to say that tactile paving is not a way to allow planners and designers to use a level surface and that low kerbs would create a trip hazard.

The department plans to release further guidance in due course, although there is little expectation in the sector this will come any time soon.

The CIHT report on shared space which provided background to the Inclusive Mobility Strategy, identified kerbs and crossings as key issues for consideration but suggested that more research was needed into the issue.

In response to the DfT's call for a pause, CIHT Urban Design Panel chair Peter Dickinson said he understood the reasons behind the move and as some authorities might not have paid enough attention to their obligations under the Equality Act.

'It now gives an opportunity to carry out work that considers how spaces should be delivered and acknowledges that visually and mobility impaired users have rights that have not always been fully understood in the past.

'Having said that, there will be continuing pressures placed upon local highway authorities and others to continue to deliver these sorts of schemes because the drivers are often economic regeneration, city and town centre redevelopment and better placemaking.

'So the sooner we get some appropriate research and then updated guidance to deliver improvements the better,' he added.

'In the interim, it may be necessary for the Department for Transport to think about an explanatory note to clarify what this request actually means for practitioners in the short term.'

Register now for full access


Register just once to get unrestricted, real-time coverage of the issues and challenges facing UK transport and highways engineers.

Full website content includes the latest news, exclusive commentary from leading industry figures and detailed topical analysis of the highways, transportation, environment and place-shaping sectors. Use the link below to register your details for full, free access.

Already a registered? Login

 
comments powered by Disqus
 
 
highways jobs

Service Manager – Network Management

Somerset County Council
£46,122 per annum
A number of exciting permanent opportunities have arisen to drive forward further improvements to our traffic related services. Somerset
Recuriter: Somerset County Council

Principal Traffic Control Engineer

Somerset County Council
£33,799 to £37,849 per annum
A number of exciting permanent opportunities have arisen to drive forward further improvements to our traffic related services. Somerset
Recuriter: Somerset County Council

Assistant Engineer

Bedford Borough Council
£31,371 - £32,878 per annum
Bedford is growing at a fast pace and we are investing heavily in our highways infrastructure. Bedford, Bedfordshire
Recuriter: Bedford Borough Council

Senior Clerk of Works

Bedford Borough Council
£27,905 - £30,507 + market rate supplement £2,630 per annum
Bedford is growing at a fast pace and we are investing heavily in our highways infrastructure. Bedford, Bedfordshire
Recuriter: Bedford Borough Council

Senior Technician

Bedford Borough Council
£27,905 - £30,507 per annum
Bedford is growing at a fast pace and we are investing heavily in our highways infrastructure. Bedford, Bedfordshire
Recuriter: Bedford Borough Council

Engineering Technician

Bedford Borough Council
£24,313 - £26,999 per annum
Bedford is growing at a fast pace and we are investing heavily in our highways infrastructure. Bedford, Bedfordshire
Recuriter: Bedford Borough Council

Engineer – Multiple disciplines

Bedford Borough Council
£33,799 - £36,876 per annum
Bedford is growing at a fast pace and we are investing heavily in our highways infrastructure.  Bedford, Bedfordshire
Recuriter: Bedford Borough Council

Trainee Engineering Technician

Bedford Borough Council
£21,589 - £23,836 per annum
Bedford is growing at a fast pace and we are investing heavily in our highways infrastructure. Bedford, Bedfordshire
Recuriter: Bedford Borough Council

Senior Asset Engineer

Isle of Man Government
£47,064 - £54,805
The Isle of Man is a special place to live and work! Isle of Man (GB) (IM)
Recuriter: Isle of Man Government

Commercial Services Officer - Funerals

Brent Council
£33,291 - £35,724 p.a. inc. plus Standby Allowance
The post will be involved in all aspects of the funeral service Brent, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Brent Council

Transportation Planning Officer x2

Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council
Band F, SCP 26-31 (£29,636 – £33,799 per annum) (£15.36 - £17.52 per hour)
The post holders will be part of a team developing transport policy encompassing all modes of travel Sandwell, West Midlands
Recuriter: Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council

Highway Asset Engineer

Lambeth Council
£38,403 pa rising in annual increments to £41,466 pa incl LW
Lambeth is a vibrant place with a diverse population and an exciting cultural scene. Lambeth, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Lambeth Council

Senior Traffic Engineer

East Riding of Yorkshire Council
£32.029 - £34.788 career grade
We need an enthusiastic and experienced traffic engineer to manage our Traffic Team. East Riding of Yorkshire
Recuriter: East Riding of Yorkshire Council

Senior Community Infrastructure Levy Administration Officer

London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth
£32,643 - £44,373
The successful candidate will play a key role in ensuring Richmond and Wandsworth Councils mitigate the... London (Greater)
Recuriter: London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth

Engineer (Structures and Tunnel)

Medway Council
£31,385 - £37,053
Exciting opportunity has arisen to work within the highways department in Medway Council... Rochester, Kent
Recuriter: Medway Council

Principal Information and Monitoring Officer

London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth
£40,183-£47,274 (Grade PO5)
Opportunity has arisen within the Spatial and Transport Planning service for a team leader with demonstrable practical experience of... London (Greater)
Recuriter: London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth

Senior Community Infrastructure Levy Administration Officer

London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth
£32,643-£44,373 (Linked Grade PO2- PO4)
There has never been a more challenging – or rewarding – time to work for Richmond and Wandsworth.  London (Greater)
Recuriter: London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth

Senior Engineer – Highways Development Service (HDS)

North Yorkshire County Council
£38,813 - £42,683 pa
We are looking for someone to join the Development Management Team in a new post. Northallerton, North Yorkshire
Recuriter: North Yorkshire County Council

Senior Development Management Engineer – Section 38

Warwickshire County Council
£37,849 - £39,782
Due to the nature of the role the ability to travel effectively throughout Warwickshire is essential. Warwick, Warwickshire
Recuriter: Warwickshire County Council

Partnerships & Activities Manager

London Borough of Bexley
£31,353 - £36,876
Currently seeking an experienced manager to work in the Parks and Open Spaces Team of Bexley Council’s Communities Department. Bexley (City/Town), London (Greater)
Recuriter: London Borough of Bexley