Parking in Arras Square, St Stephens Lane

Discussion in 'Central Ipswich' started by martinc, Feb 13, 2017.

  1. martinc

    martincMember

    Messages:
    783
    Still a big problem with no sign of any action from either SCC of IBC. So far as we understand their is a Traffic Order preventing parking but as there are no signs up it can't be enforced. IBC would be responsible for the enforcement but they have advised us that they are waiting for SCC to sort out the signs. SCC also advise that there are potential land ownership issues that may be complicating the issue. Bottom line is we can't get a definitive answer from anyone about exactly what is being done and when we can expect the Square to return to being a pleasant public open space and not a free car park..
     
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    • Ipswi

      IpswiGuest

      It is most likely a police matter?

      Arras Square is private land but as it is a "public place" (S192 RTA 1988) drivers aren't exempt from the Road Traffic Act. So for example, it doesn't have to be the public highway... so supermarket car parks are public places. In regards to Arras Square, any vehicles obstructing the flow of pedestrians and wheelchair users would be causing a specific offence... this morning cars were parked on St Stephens Lane; vans parked near BHS, not so.

      http://www.1itl.com/news/284/

      http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1988/52/section/192

      Of course, these cheeky drivers are passing signs prohibiting their uses.
      36  Drivers to comply with traffic signs.
      (1)Where a traffic sign, being a sign—

      (a)of the prescribed size, colour and type, or

      (b)of another character authorised by the Secretary of State under the provisions in that behalf of the M1Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984,

      has been lawfully placed on or near a road, a person driving or propelling a vehicle who fails to comply with the indication given by the sign is guilty of an offence.

      (2)A traffic sign shall not be treated for the purposes of this section as having been lawfully placed unless either—

      (a)the indication given by the sign is an indication of a statutory prohibition, restriction or requirement, or

      (b)it is expressly provided by or under any provision of the Traffic Acts that this section shall apply to the sign or to signs of a type of which the sign is one;

      and, where the indication mentioned in paragraph (a) of this subsection is of the general nature only of the prohibition, restriction or requirement to which the sign relates, a person shall not be convicted of failure to comply with the indication unless he has failed to comply with the prohibition, restriction or requirement to which the sign relates.

      http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1988/52/part/I/crossheading/directions-to-traffic-and-to-pedestrians-and-traffic-signs

      I think Suffolk Constabulary have refused to take action signposting people to one of the two local authorities. So in a nutshell:- (a) Unless they are going there for access (genuine tradespeople) and (b) not obstructing St Stephens Lane or the pathway besides the church (St Stephens Church Lane) even if the vehicle is mostly on private land; they have committed an offence. I am disappointed Suffolk Police hasn't enforced this but at the same time not surprised.
       
    • OP
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      martinc

      martincMember

      Messages:
      783
      This is what I got from IBC parking when I queried it after I was told by SCC it was nothing to do with them;

      14.12.16

      Whilst Parking Services hold a Traffic Regulation Order for the area, we are unable to enforce due to lack of signage. This has been reported to Suffolk County Council and requests have been made for the signage to be implemented. I would advise that a request is made via Suffolk County Councils website for the signage to be erected. The more reports Suffolk County Council receive, the more likely action is to be taken.

      If you require any further information, please do not hesitate to contact me directly.

      Kind regards

      Miss Offord
      Parking Officer

       
       
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      • Ipswi

        IpswiGuest

        This is why I am in favour of a unitary authority.

        IBC has the power through the TRO to enforce, but need signs, but it is SCC duty to install signs but neither want to know. Elsewhere the police won't get involved - as IBC hasn't got authority to enforce due to lack of signage, the burden surely defaults back to the police?

        The parking kills what should be a nice public place for pedestrians, a natural route between bus stations and to/from the waterfront via Turret Lane.

        This said the unsightly collection of A-boards outside the Tourist Information Centre... very cluttered and awful looking.
         
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        martinc

        martincMember

        Messages:
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        ah, A boards, there's another topic! Back in the day there used to be a planning enforcement officer (I think it was) who patrolled the town centre and woe betide if you have an unauthorised A board obstructing the footpath. Now it seems its a free for all, the blessed things are everywhere, getting in the way, and now doubt cause significant obstructions to wheelchair users in some places.  Just another example of how no one really cares for our town centre anymore..
         
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        • Ipswi

          IpswiGuest

          I am shocked and confused that a council such as Ipswich Borough Council wouldn't be enforcing it.

          You are allowed to have an A-Board outside your shop on the forecourt but not the public highway. Most shops don't have a forecourt, so they go outside on the pavement. Some shops are considerate where they are placed. Some stick their A-board nowhere near their shop and the council doesn't bat an eyelid!

          Some of my "personal favourites" over the years:-

          • Grumpy Mole Cafe - A-board 1 metre away from Giles Circus Statue. The cafe was 85m down the road?

          • Pump & Grind - A-board obstruction (see Sept 2015 Streetview) of Tavern St. A good 80m around the corner

          • Armafone - A-board near bus stop outside Ipswich Furniture Project - opposite side of the road!

          • Arlingtons - A-board near the postbox with Westgate St junction - approx 106m away!

          • Cafe Basso etc. - Tacket St - cluttered with a cluster of 6 A-boards

          • Tandem Personnel - based at The Walk... I remember they stuck 2 large A-boards in the middle of buttermarket a few years ago.


          I don't mind small businesses being enterprising and signposting within reason. If you are in a side street, you won't get any customers if you can't get seen. Those above take the biscuit.
           
        • OP
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          martinc

          martincMember

          Messages:
          783
          made me laugh the other day, (not much in the town centre does) where we have the road works in Queens St there is only a very narrow footpath left on the east side currently but several businesses still had their A boards out and people were struggling to get through in two directions, having to squeeze passed the boards!
           
        • Ipswi

          IpswiGuest

          I am thinking of setting Ipswich Borough Council a challenge of 10 tasks... control A-boards will be one of them, what can the other nine be? I might create a new topic for it.

          A-board abuse in Ipswich is rather counter-productive, it has got to the stage where I don't notice the content of such and would need to physical stop to read it (perhaps with a couple of exceptions).

          Will Queen Street be complete prior to the local elections? Will they come back and dig it up?!
           
        • OP
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          martinc

          martincMember

          Messages:
          783
          going round in circles on this one, I may save my NCP daily parking fee and go and stick my car there then...



           
           
        • OP
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          martinc

          martincMember

          Messages:
          783
          hang on, some more has appeared..

           
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          • Ipswi

            IpswiGuest

            Unitary Authority. I understand IBC frustration, half of their powers seem to require SCC to do A, B or C first. As highways authority, it is SCC that do all the permit parking yet it is IBC that enforces it. A really silly system which needs to be history. They seem hooked on too much that it is private land... forgetting the signs preventing people going down there in the first place.

            Both councils are happy with passing the buck... They used to be located opposite sides of the town centre! Which in itself wasn't that far in actual terms... however, now they are located opposite sides of the road... and communication and cooperation has got really bad. Labour Ipswich Borough Council and Conservative Suffolk County Council have done a deal with each other to say they are working together better (pre-election)... post-election it will be back to the usual childish behaviour of our politicians.

            I will be hitting the roads next month to start spreading a message about an alternative.
             
          • dan5

            dan5ModeratorStaff Member

            Messages:
            1,852
            I went past today a lot of parking abuses especially in St Stephens Lane at the bottom. Not being enforced.

            There has been a sign for how ever many years further down at Friars St (it had been re-positioned; StreetView gives the answer of since at least 2009) giving 200 yards prior warning before the sign near the mini-roundabout that keeps getting hit.

            StreetView snapshots below... the sign just before St Stephens Lane has changed over the years so once snapshot has the old version inset.

            St Stephens Lane, Arras Square etc. 200 yard prohibited sign 1/3

            Second advanced warning with roundabout to turnaround

            Third and final warning, no parking in St Stephens Lane and Arras Square

            There has been reports of ticketing happening in Princes St... but why are they not walking/driving 300 yards to then give people a ticket here? The town's Tourist Information Centre (TIC) is located nearby it doesn't look good for the town but we know tourism isn't a major focus.
             
          • Ipswi

            IpswiGuest

            They need to relocate the OCM bus station, create more paving (public area) outside the pub and take away the massive amount of paving the other side, move the zebra crossing so people walk directly to St Stephens Lane. Could always relocate the OCM bus station to behind Grafton House.
             
          • OP
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            martinc

            martincMember

            Messages:
            783
            Apparently the police have been there today and put warning notices on all the cars. Things are looking up.... at long last..
             
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            • mclean

              mcleanNew Member

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              Here is a link to the advisory notice attached to all the cars. Not my car, I sneaked a look at the notice on one car.

              http://imgur.com/a/LhGEH

              There was a PCSO standing in the square for half an hour observing all the cars before putting the advisory notice on the windscreens. He said there had been a lot of complaints from some businesses, especially the newly opened restaurants but most from Sainsburys as their delivery lorries often get blocked by cars parking on the side by Revs.

              Let's hope this enforcement is ongoing. Illegal parking in the town centre is a bugbear of mine, it's ugly but unfortunately is poorly enforced in Ipswich. Outside the Corn Exchange, Princes St (both sides of Giles), Cornhill, Lloyds Avenue are frequently blighted especially on market days.

               

               
               
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              • dan5

                dan5ModeratorStaff Member

                Messages:
                1,852
                I went past at 6pm this evening... cars parked on the left ... 3... 1 near Revolutions and 2 near the Buttermarket Centre entrance and of course cars in Arras Square. None with any notices on - I had this exact thought when I went past of sticking polite notices on the windscreen of illegally parked cars... surprised this has been done.

                IBC and SCC wouldn't take action - and the police kept refusing to do this. Now they are, based on complaints from the new businesses nearby?

                As for Sainsburys, they offload (as does Wilko) on Upper Brook Street.

                Deliveroo are causing problems here now... groups of cyclists waiting around to deliver from the new restaurants. Very noisy. They just group up in numbers waiting to collect (I assume) from wagamama. So I guess wagamama made the complaint! (Or perhaps the new centre owners)
                 
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                martinc

                martincMember

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                783
                Photo courtesy of Ipswich Society Facebook page.



                 

                 
                 
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                • mclean

                  mcleanNew Member

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                  The PCSO said that because IBC have their own wardens they can no longer take action against illegally parked cars (even on double yellows) unless they were causing an obstruction. It seems the police are acting on the contravention of the street signs rather than parking restrictions, of which there are currently none.

                  Sainburys main offloading area is at the rear of their store accessed by St. Stephen's Lane. They have purpose built bays including refrigerated facilities. Wilkos often unload during the evenings from Upper Brook St. which doesn't cause any obstruction or eyesore.

                  In my opinion Sainsburys should be held largely responsible for the upkeep of the surface between the road and their bays. It's in a really bad state and HGVs trying to get in is the main cause.
                   
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                  • OP
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                    martinc

                    martincMember

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                    Meanwhile I got this message a few days ago. However there may be crossed wires as I obviously reported it for correct area but reply refers elsewhere, so not sure if its right or not... but it does mention the police...!

                    Good Morning

                    Report number:- 167048
                    Report Location:- Elm Street, Ipswich.

                    Thank you for your recent report which we have investigated for you.

                    We sympathise with the situation and we can assure you the signage has been ordered (we have requested that these works are completed as a matter of urgency). In the meantime, we have requested some assistance from the police as they can enforce the moving traffic offence as drivers are going through a restricted area.

                    For further information about how we deal with highway issues, please visit our website:

                    http://www.suffolk.gov.uk/highways/
                    We would also like to make you aware of our new Highways Reporting Tool. You can make reports and keep updated of progress here http://www.suffolk.gov.uk/roads-and-transport/highway-maintenance/report-a-highways-issue/

                    Please do not use the reply function of this message. This mailbox is not monitored and therefore your email will not be seen.

                    Thank you for taking the time to contact us.
                    Yours Sincerely

                    Samuel

                     

                     
                     
                  • dan5

                    dan5ModeratorStaff Member

                    Messages:
                    1,852
                    Is it Tory PCC doing Tory SCC a favour for upcoming local elections?

                    This has been a problem for years (not just Arras Square etc) - why now?

                    Approx one month to the elections...

                    As I didn't post it here, I will create a snippet with the full comment link:
                    I went up St Stephens Lane last night around 9pm-ish and almost got run down by a car. At night it is worse. Free-for-all parking on St Stephens Lane and Arras Square at night. I would estimate around 20 or so vehicles in total including two on the left (what many may refer to as the pavement of the lane) near Revolution.…

                    At the time (at night) the parking was more severe than the photo on Ipswich Society's facebook.
                     
                  • dan5

                    dan5ModeratorStaff Member

                    Messages:
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                    I went into town via Falcon Street today and the restriction signs have been covered up in black outside Revolution.

                    Are they closing that street for their roadworks? I wonder...
                     
                  • OP
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                    martinc

                    martincMember

                    Messages:
                    783
                    I noticed that, its been like it for a few days, is it all part of diversions already in place due to the Princes St works, or in anticipation of a closure that's signed for Tacket St, Orwell Place, or another one for Foudantion St, or because there is a sink hole  in Lower Brook St thats shut the road and so far taken 9 days to do bugger all about it seems.  So many possibilities, so much chaos.

                    And on topic still getting 1 or 2 vehicles parked in Arras Square, but its greatly improved, meanwhile the paving is getting worse there, they had to fill in quite a deep pothole the other day..
                     
                  • dan5

                    dan5ModeratorStaff Member

                    Messages:
                    1,852
                    I think they are doing whatever they can to create traffic chaos. They just want to disrupt our lives.

                    I really wish they would invest in Arras Square to entice an tenant into BHS (originally an annex to Buttermarket Shopping Centre, now theres an idea... ).

                    I have noticed fewer people parking in Arras Square and today I saw a small lorry delivering to either Sainsburys or Wilko (wasn't branded).
                     
                  • OP
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                    martinc

                    martincMember

                    Messages:
                    783
                    perhaps to try and finally draw a line under this one there are now at least two parking and loading restriction signs in place now in Arras Square / St Stephens Lane. It must have taken SCC years to sort that out....

                    Now to get the pavings repaired, and the broken tree planters rebuilt..!
                     
                  • dan5

                    dan5ModeratorStaff Member

                    Messages:
                    1,852
                    It was a significant problem for many years... all authorities just passed the buck - but how the junior and senior councils work in the two-tier system only encourages such an infinitive loop.

                    It was just a small part of the overall town and after these years it is a victory... however, other councils would have transformed half the town in such time.

                    They need to revamp Arras Square... leave it too late the refurbished shopping centre will be old and nothing special... The old steps along the side of the Buttermarket Centre could should be replaced. BHS is a large empty unit, you have a revamped shopping centre, a TIC, and it is near the Ancient House... but it isn't a priority... and when I say not a priority, it isn't even on the political agenda to sort it out.
                     

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