A local resident has condemned Brent Council's slow response to the closure of Wembley High Road for major sewer works. The Council had emailed to say that advance notices of the works would be put in place on November 2nd, the day on which the works would start:
There is no just putting ‘advance notice signs’ in place for tomorrow when the work will be starting then???I just found this on Wembley Matters website: http://wembleymatters.blogspot.co.uk/2017/10/concrete-blocking-wembley-high-roads.html Seems that they knew about this problem on 25th October which would have given Brent Council ample time to get signs and notices placed in all prominent sites before now.
You have clearly not notified residents in the roads off Ealing Road do you seriously not think this will affect us at all – we need to get to work and get children to school too!!!
The Council responded:If people cannot get to Wembley Park station they will all be crowding into Wembley Central station – our trains are already hugely busy.The roads off Ealing Road are already hugely affected by the traffic grid lock which occurs in Ealing Road on a daily basis, morning and evening, due to traffic trying to get out of Ealing Road into Wembley High Road, this closure is going to have a huge further impact on roads like Chaplin Road and Lyon Park Avenue which are already used as rat runs when Ealing Road is blocked!!!It will also have a huge impact on buses and therefore commuters trying to get to Wembley Park station to get to work – also 223 and 483 trying to get to Northwick Park Hospital – how many people will miss their hospital appointments?What about when the football matches are being held at Wembley Stadium during this time – various Spurs matches and two England games.There should be huge high profile posters at bus-stops and stations and at other prominent places in Wembley Central and Alperton as well as other locations where pedestrians can see them.And it should be mandatory for bus drivers to warn people of the diversions throughout the journeys while these works are taking place – elderly people might not be aware of the diversions and would struggle to walk back to where they are meant to be going – what about late at night when you are trying to get home and suddenly find the bus is on diversion?Please note not everyone is constantly monitoring the Brent Council website for news.Once again Brent Council fail to engage with local residents properly.
The resident fired back:The provision of traffic management arrangements is the responsibility of the utility company. At the time of the blog referred to in your email, dates for the work had yet to be confirmed and so it would not have been possible for the utility contractor to manufacture and erect signing.
[You have been informed] of the steps taken to inform the public of the work and that all bus drivers have been informed of the diversion routes. It is inevitably that with works of this nature major disruption will be experienced. The work is essential and cannot be left to a later date to enable further planning and publicity. We will endeavour to encourage the utility contractor to work as quickly as possible to minimise the disruption and I thank you for your patience in this matter.
Brent Council responded:Sorry but this doesn’t really address the issues raised in my e-mails.You have the hugely busy bus routes 18, 83, 92, 182, 223, 224 and 483 plus all the other road traffic, including huge delivery lorries and construction lorries, on diversion in an already hugely congested area and yet you can only get road signs in place after the road has been closed when Wembley Matters website shows that the dates of the road closures were known about for sure as early as 28th October?: http://wembleymatters.blogspot.co.uk/2017/10/avoid-wembley-during-november-deep.htmlWhy have Brent Council only contacted residents in a small area when this is likely to have a massive impact on all residents in Wembley?Are Brent Council going to take to ensure signage detailing full information re the bus diversions are put in place at all bus stops on all affected bus routes and at all trains stations on those routes too – who is going to ensure that all bus drivers actually announce information about the diversions on the buses – don’t just say it is down to TFL to do this, please insist that they do this.To re-iterate Brent Council have a duty of care to make sure that council tax-paying residents are fully informed about road closures like this and they should be making sure that Transport for London keep fare paying passengers and drivers fully informed too.
You will appreciate the sudden and emergency nature of these works has meant a more comprehensive communications programme along the lines you suggest is simply not practicable.
My colleagues accept and have acknowledged the disruption these necessary work will cause.
Our role now is to monitor the works and their impact and to push for a speedy completion.
This did not satisfy the resident who replied this morning:
Neither on the way home last night and nor this morning did I see a warning sign in place at the “Ealing Road junction with Chaplin Road” – can you advise when this will be put in place and confirm all the other signs have now been put in place too.If these are “emergency” works there must be a way of getting signage in place quicker??? Even some temporary laminated signs attached to metal road signs would have helped – please consider how you can do this quicker in future.Can you confirm that you will be ensuring that TFL add signs/posters detailing full information re the bus diversions at all bus stops on all affected bus routes and at all trains stations on those routes too – and also ensure that all bus drivers actually announce information about the diversions on the buses – as requested before don’t just say it is down to TFL to do this, please ensure that they do this.To re-iterate (again) Brent Council have a duty of care to make sure that council tax-paying residents are fully informed about road closures like this and they should be making sure that Transport for London keep fare paying passengers and drivers fully informed too.