Holmewood Gardens Home Zone

Walkabout with residents 19 September 2004


Cllr Steve Reed, councillor for Brixton Hill Ward



Issues raised by residents




1.      The drains in Cotherstone road have been blocked for several years and flood whenever it rains.  Houses in the area have cellars which are flooded as a result. When will the drains be unblocked?

2.      The failure to build proper drainage channels into the drains across the Home Zone area mean that houses and gardens are flooded whenever it rains.  This includes the drains at the junction of Holmewood Gardens and Maplestead Road, and at the junction of Holmewood Gardens and Holmewood Road.  What do you propose to do about this, and how was the scheme allowed to be implemented without proper provision for drainage? 



Traffic island on the wide corner near 68 Holmewood Gardens

3.      It is not clear from the road markings where drivers are supposed to go, so they often drive onto the wrong side of the traffic island.  This could be remedied by putting clearer markings on the road and installing clear signage.  When will this be done?.

4.      There was originally a proposal that the surface on the residents’ parking side of the island would be a different colour or texture to differentiate it from the road surface.  Why has this not been done and when will it be remedied?

5.      The original plans included shrubs planted on the island, but these have not been put in place.  When will this be done?



Lack of distinction between the road surface and pavement areas

6.      Because the pavement is not clearly distinguished from the road surface in a number of areas, cars and other vehicles (including the contractor’s own lorries) drive on the pavement and build-outs from the pavement causing a danger to pedestrians and especially to children.  How and when will this be remedied?




7.      The number of parking spaces on Holmewood Gardens has been reduced causing a loss of amenity to residents.  The original plans dealt with this by including angled parking spaces so that more cars could fit in.  When will this be implemented?

8.      Where there is indistinct difference between the road and the pavement, such as at the corner of Holmewood Road and Holmewood Gardens, residents parking their cars occasionally commit minor infringements such as parking with one wheel on the white line.  There is no clear signage to indicate where you can and cannot park, but the parking wardens are zealous about issuing tickets.  What are you doing to ensure that parking restrictions are made clear and to make sure that the parking contractors are not unfairly penalising residents?

9.      There are two disabled parking bays near nos. 51 and 52 Holmewood Gardens, but residents tell me there are no disabled residents living nearby.  Could you confirm the status of these parking bays and whether they should still be there?



Road entry

10.  Cars are not supposed to be able to enter Holmewood Road from Brixton Hill to cut down rat-running.  This was agreed as a priority action when the engineers last met with residents but has still not been done.  When will this be put into effect?

11.  Entry treatment was also intended to be installed in Maplestead Road.  Please confirm what this treatment will be and when it will be installed.



Contract management

12.  Residents have serious concerns about the Council’s failure to properly project manage the contractors, Beech.  As a result, there are many instances of poor workmanship and work not being carried out to specification.  What actions are you taking to ensure that project management improves and that the Council is properly monitoring the work being carried out? 

13.  Can you confirm how Beech were given the contract for this work, and whether there was an open tender process before the contract was awarded?

14.  Can you confirm whether, as a result of the catalogue of disasters which has characterised the implementation of the home zone, work has temporarily been suspended?  If this is the case, what action is being taken and when will work re-start?

15.  Why are the works not being carried out in line with the plan agreed with residents some three months ago?

16.  How much has this project run over budget and over schedule and who is responsible for this?



Raised road tables

17.  The raised table at the junction of Holmewood Road and Holmewood Gardens has been has been put in with spectacular incompetence.  Faults include: it is higher than the level of the pavement; there is no functioning drainage system so houses and gardens are flooded when it rains; it is not flat – there is a visible ‘peak’ at the edge of the table in Holmewood Road; there is no distinction between the road surface and the non-road surface at the corner of Holmewood Road turning left into Holmewood Gardens; the table is higher than the level of the adjacent pavement.   Residents believe that the table is going to be dug up and replaced.  Could you confirm this is the case, and if so how much the additional work will cost and who will pay for it?

18.  The raised table was originally intended to be a different colour or texture from the main road surface and from the pedestrian areas, but this is not the case.  Block paving was one suggestion.  Why was this not done and when will it be remedied?

19.  Residents tell me that the non-road area at the corner of Holmewood Road and Holmewood Gardens which is now similar to the road surface was originally laid in brick to a herringbone pattern.  Apparently, after being put in this was dug up again.  Why was this done and who paid for it?

20.  The raised table at the junction with Maplestead Road is similarly problematic.  It has been built too low and does not slow down speeding cars: the surface is level with the pavement so there is nothing to prevent cars driving onto the pavement which represents a threat to pedestrians; the white arrow markings on the table are amateurish and need to be replaced; the finishing of the surface at the edge of the table is very poor and needs to be replaced; there is no functioning or adequate provision for drainage so rainwater washes straight onto the adjacent houses and gardens.  Please explain how this standard of work was allowed to be completed and when it will be corrected. 

21.  The table at Maplestead Road junction is so wide that cars use it to perform u-turns.  How will this be prevented?



Road gate

22.  The gate in Holmewood Gardens near Cotherstone Road is ineffective.  Vans get round it by driving on the pavement and motorcycles can easily weave through the bollards (something which I witnessed on the walkabout).  What do you propose doing about this?



Road surface

23.  The surface of the roads in the area generally is shocking, but Cotherstone Road is particularly dreadful.  Please would you confirm that Cotherstone Road will be resurfaced in the coming year as indicated in the Budget, and when the work will begin?

24.  The surfaces of Holmewood Road and Maplestead Road are also dreadful.  When will these be resurfaced and why were they not included in the current funding round?




25.  There are huge weeds growing in planting areas at the junction of Cotherstone Road and Holmewood Gardens.  This is extremely unsightly.  When will these be removed and proper planting installed?

26.  There are supposed to be spaces for trees to be planted in the pavement (in part to stop cars from driving onto the pedestrian areas) such as at the junction with Maplestead Road.  There are no holes.  When will these be put in, and can you confirm that the Council will supply the trees to be planted in them?



Road crossing

27.  The proposed road crossing into the park in the centre of Holmewood Gardens should be positioned directly opposing the gate into the park, not some metres away from it as the current markings indicate.



Development in the area near Roupell Park Estate

28.  The corner of Holmewood Gardens near Roupell Park Estate has not yet been resurfaced.  Could you confirm that mistakes similar to those seen in the laying of the table at the junction with Holmewood Road will not be repeated?  Residents are worried that functioning drainage will be removed and their homes will be flooded. 

29.  Could you also confirm what action will be taken to ensure there is not a loss of parking spaces when this part of the project is implemented?

30.  Traffic continues to speed round this corner.  Residents would like to know whether a traffic island with planting will be built here to slow traffic down.