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The Parish Council has been looking into having the whole of Iwade Village covered by a 20 mph speed limit; some parts are already 20 mph others are 30 mph. Back in the Summer Kent County Council undertook a traffic survey on the four entrances to the village; the results came back that there is not a highlighted vehicle speeding problem or identified (speed related) crash site in Iwade; the report indicated that the ‘mean speed’ for The Street was 23.4; Ferry Road 26.35; Sheppey Way 25.25; School Lane 23.55.

However if the Parish Council decided to still go ahead with a scheme the indicative cost at the moment is £16,270.79, made up by the following details received from Kent County Council:

- The cost does NOT include electrical connections for illuminated signs.

- • Includes a price (£1662.02) for new illuminated sign posts - it is hoped that at least two existing illuminated posts can be reused which will reduce this figure.

- • Includes an allowance of £2,057.52 for 20 new traffic sign posts, however, it is hoped that existing posts and lighting columns can be utilised for the new repeater signs. If this does happen, then this figure can either be substantially reduced or even be removed from the final cost. The issue will be if at detailed design stage it is discovered that the street lighting columns cannot be used (as they are now for the 30 mph repeaters), but that is perhaps a consideration for the future. Should the ‘worst happen’ the final cost estimate is likely to increase by around £102 for every new post that is required above the 20 already priced up.

Having considered and drawn up several options, it is recommended keeping signs to a minimum and going with the provision of unrestricted parking bays and road marking 20 mph roundels, both of which can be classed as traffic calming. This will keep sign clutter to a minimum and have the least impact on the appearance of the Village.

If the recommended project is selected to go to detailed design, one factor that will need to be addressed is future maintenance, and a request may be made for the Parish Council to contribute to refreshing the road markings as and when the need arises. As at time of writing County are not able to provide a figure as to what this could be. The current price for a road lining gang is around £500 for half a day. If the lines are laid correctly, the likelihood is that they will not need to be refreshed for 2-3 years after the scheme is completed, longer in areas where traffic volumes are low.

- • Patching existing signs was considered but after further investigation this option has been deemed unsuitable (1) there is an insufficient number of signs that can be utilised (2) the patch may deteriorate within a short time frame and require replacing.

- • A fully signed scheme can be considered thus reducing the amount of road markings; however the indicative cost for such a scheme is likely to be in the region of £16,000 - £19,000.

Unfortunately, there is no ‘cheap option’ for implementing a village-wide 20 mph zone. Roger Truelove advised that there is no money left in his Members Fund for this year and next year (due to cuts) this might not exist. There are no other funding streams through Kent County Council that could be utilised for the scheme. The Parish Council also asked County to look at placing a 20 mph speed limit on School Lane, but the design fees alone for this would be £750, added to which is the cost of Road Traffic Orders; other associated signage, markings and any additional build-outs (which cost in the region of £1000 each). As any change to the speed limit in the Village would prove extremely costly, funding for this having to be raised through the Precept; the Parish Council took the decision not to pursue the project at this time.

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Iwade Observer