Agenda and minutes

Transport Committee
Friday, 21st September, 2018 11.00 am

Venue: Committee Room A, Wellington House, 40-50 Wellington Street, Leeds

Items
No. Item

20.

Apologies for absence

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Peter Box, James Lewis, and Alex Ross Shaw and Ian Cherry.

21.

Exempt information - possible exclusion of the press and public

1.         To highlight Appendix 1 of Agenda item 9 which officers have identified as containing exempt information within the meaning of Schedule 12A to the Local Government Act 1972, and where officers consider that the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information, for the reasons outlined in the report.

 

2.         To consider whether or not to accept the officers’ recommendation in respect of the above information as set out in Appendix 1 of Agenda item 9.

 

3.         If the recommendation is accepted, to formally pass the following resolution:-

 

RESOLVED – That in accordance with paragraph 3 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A to the Local Government Act 1972, the public be excluded from the meeting during consideration of Appendix 1 of Agenda item 9 on the grounds that it is likely, in view of the nature of the business to be transacted or the nature of the proceedings, that if members of the press and public were present there would be disclosure to them of exempt information and for the reasons set out in the report that in all the circumstances of the case, the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information.

Minutes:

Resolved: That in accordance with paragraph 3 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A to the local Government Act 1972, the public be excluded from the meeting during consideration of Appendix 2 to Agenda item 12 on the grounds that it is likely in view of the nature of the business to be transacted or the nature of the proceedings, that if members of the press and public were present there would be disclosure to them of exempt information and for the reasons set out in the report that in all the circumstances of the case, the public interest in maintaining the exception outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information.

22.

Declarations of disclosable pecuniary interests

Minutes:

There were no disclosable pecuniary interests declared by Members at the meeting.

23.

Minutes of the meeting of the Transport Committee held on 6 July 2018 pdf icon PDF 135 KB

Minutes:

Agenda Item 6 (Governance Arrangements)

 

Councillor Bolt raised an issue regarding the accuracy of the minute relating to the report on Governance Arrangements advising that the recommendations were incomplete and did not accurately reflect the decisions made at the meeting on 6 July, as presented in the report. 

 

Furthermore, in relation to a query raised concerning the frequency of the District Consultation Sub-Committee (DCSC) meetings in the 2018/19 municipal year, Councillor Bolt asked that the additional recommendation which had been proposed allowing DCSC chairs the discretion to call additional meetings, as required, be recorded in the minutes.

 

Resolved:

 

(i)            That the minute relating to Agenda Item 6 (Governance Arrangements), be amended to accurately reflect the recommendations in the report which had been approved at the meeting on 6 July 2018.

 

(ii)          That the recommendation made giving each District Consultation Committee Chair the discretion to call additional meetings if required be recorded in the minutes of the meeting.

 

(iii)       That the minutes of the Transport Committee held on 6 July 2018, amended as detailed above, be approved as a true record and signed by the Chair.

24.

Chair's Comments

Minutes:

The Chair, Councillor Kim Groves, opened the meeting and advised that following a request from the Committee, David Hoggarth (Strategic Rail Director, Transport for the North) had supplied a written response to issues on which he had promised further information following his presentation at the meeting on 6 July 2018 and this had been circulated to Members.

25.

Rail Performance Update

Minutes:

The Transport Committee considered a report highlighting rail performance issues encountered since the new timetable had been introduced in May 2018, the actions being taken to mitigate them and the risks and scope for improvements to ongoing performance.

 

Members criticised the lack of responsiveness by the rail operators and agreed that although improvements had been made to services affected by the summer’s timetable problems, services in the region were still extremely unreliable with frequent partial or full cancellations, poor punctuality and trains being short formed and unable to cope with capacity.

 

The Committee were given an update on the current performance of Northern and Transpennine Express (TPE) services and the steps being taken to address the continuing problems.

 

Councillor Lyons commented that the strengthening of trains was crucial to ensure that trains were not full to capacity leaving passengers behind.  He asked whether there were sufficient drivers and guards in place to operate services and fulfil the current timetable and asked that Northern and Transpennine Express provide a written summary of their staffing levels.

 

Graham Meiklejohn (Regional Development Manager, TPE) was present at the meeting and was invited to the table to provide an update on the latest position with TPE performance.  Mr Meiklejohn advised that TPE was on target to introduce new, higher capacity trains towards the end of the year and that they had sufficient driver provision for the new trains. Mr Meiklejohn was thanked for the information.

 

Cllr Bolt asked for an update detailing the specific effects of the timetable changes on services in the region.

 

Resolved:

 

(i)            That the contents of the report be noted.

 

(ii)          That the rail performance issues as a consequence of the introduction of the May 2018 timetable, as set out in the report, be noted.

 

(iii)         That the recommendation to urge the respective train operators and the Rail North Partnership to stabilise local train services as soon as possible and to ensure delivery of the service enhancements specified in the rail franchise be endorsed.

 

(iv)         That an update detailing the specific effects of the timetable changes on services in the region be provided to the Committee.

26.

Transpennine Route Upgrade: Ambition for West Yorkshire pdf icon PDF 152 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Transport Committee considered a report providing an update on the Trans-Pennine Route Upgrade (TRU) rail project and which:

 

(a)        summarised the emerging findings of work to examine desirable service outcomes;

(b)        set out the types of choice the region was likely to be able to make should TRU proceed as envisaged by Transport for the North (TfN); and

(c)        sought Transport Committee’s approval of the West Yorkshire Combined Authority’s proposed position on the specification of TRU.

 

Members were provided with a detailed update on progress with the Transpennine Route Upgrade (TRU), a project to renew and upgrade the railway between York/Selby and Manchester via Leeds and Huddersfield. The Combined Authority and Transport for the North (TfN) had identified and agreed that work should been undertaken to examine desirable service outcomes for West Yorkshire; this piece of work explored the nature of the population and employment patterns on the TRU corridor as it passed through West Yorkshire, travel to work patterns, station catchments and future developments likely to influence travel patterns, along with demand forecasting of potentially successful service patterns.  The findings of that work-stream had resulted in a technical note being produced (the Ambition document) which was appended to the submitted report.  The technical note had been shared in draft form with TfN and the Department for Transport (DfT) and had been used to inform discussion at the TfN Partnership Board attended by Cllr Judith Blake on the 13 September.  TfN’s position would be communicated to the Department for Transport with a view to influencing the decision of the Secretary of State in terms of what, if any, variant of TRU should be taken forward.  A decision was expected in January/February 2019.

 

Members discussed the technical note in detail and provided the following comments:

 

·         that more ambition is needed;

  • there is a need to ensure that the TP upgrade delivers on capacity;
  • the detail around movement of freight was insufficient;
  • rail movement should be incorporated into Local Plans;
  • a map showing significant areas of population would have been helpful;
  • the document should highlight points of growth - students at colleges and Huddersfield University;
  • concerns re Penistone line;
  • impact on the upper Calder Valley, Brighouse, Huddersfield;
  • the electric railway charter will have an impact on the Calder Valley line;
  • concerns that full electrification will cause major disruption;
  • lack of connections to other rail services - no service from Wakefield to Manchester;
  • rail capacity issues (ie Wakefield Westgate to Huddersfield);
  • Bradford/Calderdale/Wakefield missing from list at 1.3, page 29;
  • stakeholders should have been consulted;
  • consideration be given to the merger of Mirfield & Ravensthorpe stations.

 

Cllr McBride spoke about his concerns for the Kirklees district and commented that Kirklees Members had not been consulted during formulation of the technical document and asked that discussions take place as a matter of urgency before the views of the Committee were passed  to TfN.

 

On the issue of freight, Councillor Groves advised members that she had recently met  ...  view the full minutes text for item 26.

27.

Responses to formal rail consultations: Cross Country franchise and Periodic review pdf icon PDF 135 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Transport Committee considered a report providing information on the following formal rail consultations.

 

Cross Country consultation

 

Members were provided with an update on the Department for Transport’s (DfT) public consultation on the design of the next Cross Country rail franchise.  The DfT had asked for views and ideas on how to improve services on the Cross Country network in advance of tendering for the new franchise expected to be published in early 2019.  Members had been given the opportunity to provide feedback by correspondence on 22 August and the final Combined Authority response was submitted to DfT on 30 August.  A copy of the consultation response was appended to the submitted report for information.

 

Members were informed that the DfT had cancelled the Cross Country rail franchise competition but the Committee was asked to endorse the response in readiness for a future re-start of the proposals.

 

Members commented that the quality of trains and capacity on the Cross Country route was extremely poor and a 2 year delay was wholly unacceptable.

 

Office of Rail Regulation (ORR) consultation

 

Members were provided with an update on the Office of Rail Regulation (ORR) public consultation on the regulatory framework for Network Rail in the period 2109 to 2024 (known as Periodic Review 2018).  Members had been given the opportunity to provide feedback by correspondence on 22 August and the final Combined Authority response was submitted by the closing date of 31 August.  A copy of the consultation response was appended to the submitted report for information.

 

Resolved:

 

(i)            That the contents of the report be noted.

 

(ii)          That the Combined Authority’s response to the Cross Country rail franchise public consultation, as submitted to DfT, be endorsed.

 

(iii)       That the Combined Authority’s response to the Periodic Review 2018, as submitted to the office of Road and Rail, be endorsed.

28.

Consultation reply to DFT Bus Services Act 2017 pdf icon PDF 160 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Transport Committee considered a report providing information on the Department for Transport’s (DfT) consultations on the `Bus Services Act 2017: accessible information and open data’.

 

Accessible Information Consultation Response

 

It was reported that the DfT were seeking views on ways to improve information for bus passengers through the Bus Services Act 2017 and Accessible Information Regulations.  They want to introduce regulations requiring bus operators to provide audible and visible information on local bus services to help passengers identify the route and direction of services, each upcoming stop and points at which diversions start and end.

 

Open Data Consultation Response

 

The Committee were informed that the DfT were seeking views on ways to improve information for bus passengers and proposed to make regulations requiring the provision of digital Open Data by all operators of local bus services across England to make it easier for bus passengers to plan their journeys through access to routes and timetable data, fares and tickets data and Real Time Information.

 

The detailed consultation responses were appended to the report and had been submitted by the closing date of 16 September 2018.

 

Resolved: 

 

(i)            That the contents of the report be noted.

 

(ii)        That the submission of the consultation responses be endorsed.

29.

City Connect Cycle City Ambition Programme (CCAG) Phase 1 pdf icon PDF 133 KB

Minutes:

The Transport Committee was provided with an update on the progress of the City Connect programme including the contractual dispute between Leeds City Council and the delivery contractor for the Leeds-Bradford Cycle Superhighway project.

 

Members were provided with an update on progress with the CityConnect Programme which was majority funded through the Department for Transport Cycle City Ambition Grant (CCAG) and LTP Integrated Transport Block (plus other DfT Grant funding) and was being delivered in two phases. The first phase of works to deliver the Leeds-Bradford and Leeds-Seacroft cycle superhighways, 20mph zones, an upgrade to the Leeds-Liverpool Canal Towpath and additional cycle parking had been completed in 2016.  An update on progress with projects in phase 2 was provided as detailed in paragraph 2.4 of the report.

 

Leeds - Bradford Cycle Superhighway

 

It was reported that following post-completion of the phase 1 works on the entire route of the Leeds - Bradford Cycle Superhighway, a stage three Road Safety Audit had identified a series of minor enhancement works which were required. There was also ongoing risk associated with the finalisation of the account between Leeds City Council and the contractor of the phase 1 works and a level of contingency funding had been held in the event that further costs were realised.

 

The Committee’s approval was sought to enter into a funding agreement with Leeds City Council for up to £0.300 million to enable enhancement works to be carried out on the Leeds cycle superhighway together with the remaining project contingency funding outlined in the confidential appendix to the report.  Approval was also sought to enter into a funding agreement with Bradford Council for up to £0.150 million to enable enhancement works to be carried out on the Bradford cycle superhighway.

 

Members expressed the view that there was a need for a more overreaching strategy with an extended network of quality cycle paths and availability of e-bikes.  Councillor Groves suggested it may be useful to have a cycling working group with the emphasis on safe cycling. 

 

Resolved:

 

(i)            That the contents of the update on the progress of the City Connect programme report be noted.

 

(ii)          That approval be given to entering into a funding agreement with Leeds City Council for up to £0.300 million, together with the remaining contingency funding.

 

(iii)         That approval be given to entering into a funding agreement with Bradford Council for up to £0.150 million.

 

(iv)         That further discussions be held with Leeds City Council and Bradford Council once the outcome of the dispute resolution process is known.

30.

City Region Transport Update pdf icon PDF 168 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee was provided with updates on the following issues as set out in paragraphs 2.1 to 2.48 of the submitted report:

 

·         DEFRA Clean Air Strategy – Consultation Response

·         Clean Bus Technology Fund

·         Taxi Electric Vehicle Charging scheme

·         Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plans

·         LNER service withdrawals

·         Rail Delivery Group Easier Fares Consultation

·         Annual Rail Fares Increase

·         Joseph Rowntree Foundation Report

·         Bus 18 Update

·         Upgrade Works in Bus Stations

·         Future of Mobility – Call for Evidence

·         West Yorkshire Integrated Transport Block programme 2019 – 2022

·         Transforming Cities Fund

·         Leeds Integrated Station Master Plan

·         HS2 Hybrid Bill

·         Transport Committee September Workshop

 

The report provided the Committee with a detailed update on each of the above issues.

 

On the Clean Air Strategy consultation, members expressed concern that Leeds had been the only authority to have been consulted.

 

Resolved:  That the updates provided in the report be noted.

31.

Summary of Transport Schemes pdf icon PDF 103 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Transport Committee considered a report which provided information on the transport related West Yorkshire and York Investment Committee (the Investment Committee) recommendations arising out of its meeting on 4 July 2018.

 

It was reported that the recommendations for projects that were made by the Investment Committee on 4 July, had been approved at the West Yorkshire Combined Authority meeting on 2 August 2018 or delegated for approval to the Combined Authority’s Managing Director.

 

Resolved: That the contents of the report be noted.