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Author Topic: Portishead Line reopening for passengers - ongoing discussion  (Read 242810 times)
chuffed
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« Reply #795 on: January 11, 2020, 06:50:41 am »

Enough for a red squirrel to turn white no doubt!
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TonyK
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« Reply #796 on: January 11, 2020, 01:49:19 pm »

It's worth remembering that every few years it becomes necessary to close the A4 Portway, on the other side of the Avon Gorge but also part of the 156 hectares that make up the Avon Gorge SSSI, while they do works to stop rocks falling on cars below. This involves, I suspect, far more damaging interventions than will be needed for the Portishead line.


Indeed so. It used to be a lot more intensive before the canopy was built under the bridge, although I'm not sure that falling rocks were the primary reason. I can recall the Portway being closed for months one year, whilst people in harnesses swung from ropes, inspecting and chiselling here and there. I don't believe there is a way to completely stabilised the A4 side of the gorge to the point that there could never be a rock big enough to do some serious harm fall 80 metres. There are countries where the response to this danger would be to erect a sign saying "Beware of falling rocks", but I can well understand why that isn't the way here.

Well if any of this does cause further delays to this reopening, I for one will certainly be apomictic with rage.

I'm personally hoping it doesn't come to that, what with the holiday season just around the corner.
« Last Edit: January 11, 2020, 01:55:12 pm by TonyK » Logged

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« Reply #797 on: January 15, 2020, 12:52:47 pm »

Notice of Acceptance of Application for DCO in the paper this morning - https://ibb.co/3FTdN5n
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« Reply #798 on: January 15, 2020, 01:38:34 pm »

Notice of Acceptance of Application for DCO in the paper this morning - https://ibb.co/3FTdN5n

For those who prefer it, the same news on the interweb, and the letter from TPI:
Quote
Dear Mr Willcock,Planning Act 2008 (as amended) – Section 55
Application by North Somerset District Council for an Order Granting Development Consent for the Portishead Branch Line – MetroWest Phase 1
Notification of decision to accept an application for Examination for an Order Granting Development Consent
I refer to the above application for an Order granting development consent made under section 37(2) of the Planning Act 2008 (as amended) (PA2008) and received by the Planning Inspectorate on behalf of the Secretary of State on 15 November 2019.

The Secretary of State has decided to accept this application for Examination. In reaching this decision, the Secretary of State has:
• in respect of section 55(3)(e) had regard to the matters set out in section 55(4), and concluded that the applicant has complied with Chapter 2 of Part 5 of PA2008; and
• in respect of section 55(3)(f), had regard to the extent to which those matters set out in section 55(5A) have either been complied with or followed, and concluded that the application (including accompaniments) is of a satisfactory standard.

Please be aware of your duties under:
• sections 56, 58 and 59 of PA2008;
• Regulations 8, 9 and 10 of the Infrastructure Planning (Applications: Prescribed Forms and Procedure) Regulations 2009 (as amended); and
• Regulation 13 of The Infrastructure Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) Regulations 2009 or, for projects scoped after 16 May 2017, the Infrastructure Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) Regulations 2017. Delete this bullet point if your project is not EIA development.

Yours sincerely
Simone Wilding
Head of Major Casework Management
For and on behalf of the Secretary of State for the Ministry of Housing,
Communities and Local Government
« Last Edit: January 15, 2020, 01:53:54 pm by Red Squirrel » Logged
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« Reply #799 on: January 16, 2020, 12:09:12 pm »

A hard copy of the Development Consent Order documents can now be viewed at Portishead Library, Pill Resource Centre and Bristol Library until 26 February (Note: The documents total 20,735 pages!).

The documents can also be viewed online at:

https://infrastructure.planninginspectorate.gov.uk/projects/south-west/portishead-branch-line-metrowest-phase-1/.

One page for every great crested newt I guess !
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TonyK
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« Reply #800 on: January 18, 2020, 08:16:27 pm »

Or 4 or so per sleeper.
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« Reply #801 on: January 21, 2020, 09:05:24 am »

Quote
Ashton Gate frustration at station and metrobus inaction

Bosses at Ashton Gate Stadium say they are trying and so far failing to persuade council leaders to improve the transport links to their stadium.

The chairman of Ashton Gate said they have asked council chiefs to work towards reopening the old Ashton Gate station and move the Metrobus stop named Ashton Gate closer to the stadium, but have been ‘unable to get a commitment’.

[...long article continues...]

Ashton Gate Stadium Ltd and Bristol City Council are working together on other transport issues, however. The stadium is part-funding work to install parking restrictions and double yellow lines on roads near the stadium, mainly along Duckmoor Road, to improve local access while matches are on.

[...]
Source: Bristol Post



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TonyK
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« Reply #802 on: January 21, 2020, 11:11:57 am »

The wider saga of Ashton Gate shows how Bristol City Council continually gets it wrong. I recall a temporary platform being put up opposite the stadium in the early 1980s to cater for people travelling to see the Rolling Stones and Billy Graham (two separate gigs, obviously) with enough rolling stock to make a big difference. The stadium now holds 16,000 and regularly gets close to that for at least 23 home football and 16 rugby matches, plus a variety of concerts, conventions and events throughout the closed season. As the club has grown, there has been a considerable increase in the problems experienced by local residents and businesses by the regular influx of visitors. So far, BCC's most notable response has been to help wreck plans to build a new stadium away from the present one. Ashton Gate is to gain many more homes in the near future, yet a station there remains only an aspiration rather than the subject of tough lobbying. MetroBust is seemingly unable to run additional services because of its "special" guided bit, and the stops were in any case sited to discourage use by football fans. The other local service, the 24, is a single deck service that has seen its frequency cut since the M2 began.

Bristol City want to expand further to make fuller use of the ground. There's a chance they will be in the Premier League next season. A station there is required for the stadium alone, let alone the thousands of people living nearby. I can think of no other football ground with such poor transport links, except Bristol Rovers, of course.
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« Reply #803 on: January 21, 2020, 11:21:15 am »

The stadium now holds 16,000 and regularly gets close to that for at least 23 home football and 16 rugby matches, plus a variety of concerts, conventions and events throughout the closed season

Sorry to be pedantic but those numbers are massively short
The capacity of the stadium is now 27,000. City get over 20,000 every game and the Bears are getting just under that, with a number of sell outs already, they're playing Gloucester this weekend and will way over the 20,000 again for this game
As for the concerts, this summer there is permission to go over 30,000 for "The Killers" gig.

As for conventions etc, these take place all year round and not just out of season
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Red Squirrel
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« Reply #804 on: January 21, 2020, 04:55:57 pm »

Or 4 or so per sleeper.

Actually, you could easily lose the whole lot in the ballast:

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« Reply #805 on: January 21, 2020, 05:03:05 pm »

Actually, you could easily lose the whole lot in the ballast:

I’m sure it’d be found lying there when the next set of studies and ground surveys take place.
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TonyK
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« Reply #806 on: January 22, 2020, 05:19:04 pm »


Sorry to be pedantic but those numbers are massively short
The capacity of the stadium is now 27,000. City get over 20,000 every game and the Bears are getting just under that, with a number of sell outs already, they're playing Gloucester this weekend and will way over the 20,000 again for this game

My typo - I intended 26,000, but thank you for t the correction. I understand there is now  a plan to enlarge the stadium further, which will probably make  some of those who campaigned for the Town Green on the alternative site wonder  if  they  backed the right horse.

I last  saw  the Who there, before I got old. I think that was a pretty big crowd, and only my encyclopaedic  knowledge of  the area got us out  and  home quickly. I also recall going to a football match at Highbury when in London. That was a stadium built as big as it could be, surrounded by houses, at least with the  benefit  of a tube station close by. There's  a little bit of BS3 heading the same way.
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« Reply #807 on: February 02, 2020, 11:23:56 am »

Spotted this in the Jan 2020 Draft JLTP. I wonder if this is the issue TonyK was alluding to? This issue was being discussed last year, I think, but the following statement doesn't seem to have a conclusion...

Quote
HRA Mitigation
The MetroWest Phase 1 project level HRA proposes a series of mitigation measures, including implementing protective measures during scheme construction which would reduce the adverse effects on the Avon Gorge Woodlands SAC. However, it is not possible to avoid the loss of up to 0.71ha of woodland within the SAC and therefore an adverse effect on this SAC remains following mitigation.
The project level HRA has therefore proceeded to evaluate the alternatives to the MetroWest Phase 1 scheme, however, it has not been possible to identify any feasible alternatives to this scheme. It is therefore necessary for this scheme to advance to the ‘IROPI test’ (imperative reasons of overriding public interest). The IROPI that have been considered within the project level HRA relates to human health, public safety and important environmental benefits. Compensatory measures are also provided within the project level HRA, including habitat management and planting of additional woodland with whitebeams. However, as a result of the European Court of Justice interpretation of the Habitats Directive, these measures cannot be taken into account in the assessment of the implications of the project.
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« Reply #808 on: February 02, 2020, 01:24:15 pm »

If you look in the DCO document set, there isn't one called Habitat Regulations Assessment (HRA). There is a counsel's opinion that the HRA is legally well-founded, which kind of suggests such a thing exists. There is also the oddly Trotksyite sounding "Report to Inform Habitats Regulations Assessment APFP Regulation 5(2)(g)". I guess the point is that the HRA is a process, involving several reports. Maybe it should finish with one called the HRA Assessment...

Anyway, the RIHRA has this conclusion to one of its sections:
Quote
11.8 Conclusions
11.8.1 The decision to go ahead with a plan or project must meet the conditions and requirements of Article 6(4). In particular, it must be documented that:
  • the alternative put forward for approval is the least damaging for habitats, for species and for the integrity of the Natura 2000 site(s), regardless of economic considerations, and that no other feasible alternative exists that would not adversely affect the integrity of the site(s);
  • there are imperative reasons of overriding public interest, including ‘those of a social or economic nature’;
  • all compensatory measures necessary to ensure that the overall coherence of Natura 2000 is protected are taken.
11.8.2 For the reasons set out above it is considered that all three tests are met in the case of the DCO Scheme and that the adverse impact on the integrity of the Avon Gorge Woodlands SAC predicted at Stage 2 is adequately compensated. It is concluded that the grant of consent for the DCO Scheme will not cause detriment to the maintenance of the overall coherence of the Natura 2000 network. The grant of consent to the DCO Scheme offers potential to improve the condition of the Avon Gorge Woodlands SAC.
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« Reply #809 on: February 02, 2020, 01:32:23 pm »

If you look in the DCO document set, there isn't one called Habitat Regulations Assessment (HRA). There is a counsel's opinion that the HRA is legally well-founded, which kind of suggests such a thing exists. There is also the oddly Trotksyite sounding "Report to Inform Habitats Regulations Assessment APFP Regulation 5(2)(g)". I guess the point is that the HRA is a process, involving several reports. Maybe it should finish with one called the HRA Assessment...

Anyway, the RIHRA has this conclusion to one of its sections:
Quote
11.8 Conclusions
11.8.1 The decision to go ahead with a plan or project must meet the conditions and requirements of Article 6(4). In particular, it must be documented that:
  • the alternative put forward for approval is the least damaging for habitats, for species and for the integrity of the Natura 2000 site(s), regardless of economic considerations, and that no other feasible alternative exists that would not adversely affect the integrity of the site(s);
  • there are imperative reasons of overriding public interest, including ‘those of a social or economic nature’;
  • all compensatory measures necessary to ensure that the overall coherence of Natura 2000 is protected are taken.
11.8.2 For the reasons set out above it is considered that all three tests are met in the case of the DCO Scheme and that the adverse impact on the integrity of the Avon Gorge Woodlands SAC predicted at Stage 2 is adequately compensated. It is concluded that the grant of consent for the DCO Scheme will not cause detriment to the maintenance of the overall coherence of the Natura 2000 network. The grant of consent to the DCO Scheme offers potential to improve the condition of the Avon Gorge Woodlands SAC.


I really wonder how we manage to build anything in this country now....... Roll Eyes
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