Green Travel Plan for Kings Heath – what does it mean?

Kings Heath High Street has been designated a Green Travel District. This means that the area is part of plans by Birmingham City Council (BCC) to reduce congestion and pollution caused by high volumes of traffic. Councillor Claire Spencer will explain what this is likely to mean for Kings Heath at the Forum’s Annual General Meeting.

Residents will have the chance to ask questions about the plan.

The meeting will also hear about feedback received from visitors to the KHRF consultation stall at the Farmers’ Market on 4 March.

The meeting will begin with the Annual General Meeting of the KHRF. Committee members will report on the group’s activities during the year. These include working with BCC on the Council’s strategy for road safety in Kings Heath, helping residents to get dumped rubbish removed and working with local councillors and council officers to improve the cleanliness of the High Street.

The meeting is open to all residents of Kings Heath.

Date: Wednesday 15 March 2017

Time: 7 pm to 9 pm

Location: Kings Heath Community Centre, Heathfield Road, Kings Heath B14 7DB

ASDA Kings Heath delivery times trial

Kings Heath High Street has been identified as one of the most polluted roads in Birmingham. That and the dangerous nature of the road has led Birmingham City Council (BCC) to search for ways to improve matters for residents.

The council is teaming up with ASDA for a trial of new delivery arrangements. During the trial, deliveries to the ASDA store in Kings Heath will be re-scheduled to take place outside peak traffic times. This will reduce the number of lorries heading along the High Street.

The store’s current delivery hours are 07:30 to 18:00 Monday to Saturday, and 09:00 to 16:00 on Sundays, bank holidays and public holidays.

The proposed changes are 06:00 to 19:00 Monday to Saturday, and 08:00 to 18:00 on Sundays and bank holidays.

BCC and ASDA want to know what local people think of the idea. Representatives of both will be at the store on:

  • Thursday, 24 November 2016 between 3pm and 7pm.
  • Friday, 25 November 2016 between 12 noon and 7pm. Local councillors should be there from 5.30pm on Friday.

Anybody with an interest in this project can go to the store to discuss it at these times. No appointment is necessary.

More information can be obtained from:

  • Kevin Cummins, Senior Transportation Officer at Birmingham City Council (Kevin.Cummins@birmingham.gov.uk)
  • Andrew Lester, who is facilitating the sessions (alester@hardhat.co.uk)

Reporting blocked roadside drains

Localised flooding can, sometimes, be caused by blocked storm drains, known as gullies. These are found at the edges of the city’s roads. We’re approaching the time of year when these are even more likely to be blocked because fallen leaves can build up across the gratings over gullies.

Now Birmingham City Council has introduced an online form so that local people can report blocked gullies. BCC wants reports to include ‘An accurate location (including landmarks, nearby house numbers or road junctions)’ as well as ‘A detailed description of the problem (e.g. blocked gully or missing grate)’.

If you want to report a blocked or damaged gully, visit the reporting form.

Obviously there is no guarantee that reporting a blocked gully will result in it being cleared. Indeed, the road layout in some places makes it almost impossible for surface water to drain away. If you report a flooding problem and it doesn’t get cleared, then the next step is to report it to your local councillors along with the reference number.

Who’s checking on Amey?

Members of the Moseley and Kings Heath Greener, Cleaner, Safer Environment group were surprised to be told that Amey is ‘moving towards one hundred per cent monitoring’ of highways repair work. The news was delivered by an Amey representative at a recent meeting. Amey currently carries out all highway maintenance work for Birmingham City Council (BCC).

This leads to an extraordinary conclusion: that nobody is currently checking all the work that Amey is doing for BCC to make sure that it’s up to standard.

There should be a considerable amount of work to be checked. The contract with Amey started in 2010, runs for 25 years and is worth £2.7 billion.

However, it seems that BCC has taken action by imposing financial penalties on Amey following complaints from residents that work was not being done or was not up to standard. Amey has disputed the allegations, claiming that all work meets the standards set out in the contract. The argument has been rolling since Autumn 2015. According to the Birmingham Post, it was still not resolved as recently as September 2016.

But why does BCC rely on local residents to monitor the work carried out by its biggest contractor? Given the value of the contract, it must surely be possible to have BCC staff checking every job completed by Amey?

And on a £2.7 billion contract, it should surely have been possible to make Amey pay for the BCC staff needed to check the work.

Amey consultation event 14 January 2015

This event is an opportunity for residents to meet Amey and see what their planned works are for footways, pathways and cycleways over the next five years. You’ll be able to discuss the proposed footway and road programme with Amey contractors and local councillors.

The event is on Wednesday, 14 January 2015 at Kings Heath Community Centre, 8 Heathfield Road, B14 7DB and starts at 6pm.