Dunblane North Parapet Background

Perth Road — North Parapet of the road bridge

The choice of a concrete wall for the North parapet has not been popular, to say the least.

The papers for the MEETING of the ENVIRONMENT & HOUSING COMMITTEE will be held in the COUNCIL CHAMBERS, OLD VIEWFORTH, STIRLING on THURSDAY 15 NOVEMBER 2018, has some details as to the background on the decision as I supported a petition with an aim to try and rectify the situation.

The petition’s aim being as reported in the paper:

Petitioners Wish: Stirling Council to enter into discussions with Network Rail to investigate and take any measures necessary to ensure the newly replaced northern parapet is either replaced, disguised or cladded, so that it is in keeping with the surrounding townscape and matches the parapet on the South side of Perth Road.

Background as per the paper:

2.9. An exemption to design guidance was possible on the southern parapet wall. The existing parapet wall was of a stone construction. It was allowable that the required extension be constructed of like for like stone.

2.10. Due to the poor aesthetic and structural condition of the northern parapet wall, a decision was made to fully replace the northern parapet, as opposed to attach a parapet extension.

2.11. Two options, compliant with the standards, existed for the design of the proposed new northern parapet wall.

2.11.1. A smooth concrete wall. As per what has been constructed.

2.11.2. The second being two courses of brickwork.

2.12. Prior to the finalisation of the design philosophy for the parapet, consultation with the Community Council took place. During this consultation the Community Council outlined that their preferred option was the new concrete parapet.

2.13. This proposal was then agreed with the planners and officers through Stirling Councils planning and approvals processes.

2.14. A requirement of the preferred design of the northern parapet is that the inside face of the concrete parapet wall be entirely smooth, free from projections and free from footholds. Such design restrictions exist so that all road users are sufficiently protected.

Note that the Dunblane Community Council outlined that their preferred option was the new concrete parapet.

On the decision the Community Council originally backed the parapets being replaced — A representative of Dunblane Community Council said: “The Community Council is delighted that this very important project will be underway in the next month or so.

“The old bridge and its decaying parapets are nothing short of an eyesore currently. The new structure will be a vast improvement and a vital component of a successful streetscape project.

The ENVIRONMENT & HOUSING COMMITTEE closed the petition as we were informed that NetworkRail were working with the Community Council to improve the wall. The committee were unaware of what options were being presented.

In November NetworkRail presented some indicative options to the newly formed Dunblane Community Council that they were requested not to share externally (though not with the wider community), however they did this meaning they shared options that became invalid. This has led to the Dunblane Community Council sticking with an invalid option as their choice to NetworkRail on behalf of the local community.

In January I was able to get a copy of the valid options and presented these to the wider community, and created a survey to allow the community to have their say on what colour they would prefer the wall to be painted.

The survey is available here :— https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/CZXFW3T

I promoted the survey again in March, when NetworkRail contacted the Council, the Community Council, and Elected Members to highlight that given that the Community Council is continuing to stick with an invalid option, they were unwilling to make a change to the wall without community support, and as they would be offsite shortly without a decision being made, the wall would be left as is.

I would urge as many people as possible to complete the survey as possible in order to help demonstrate community support for whichever colour option has the highest support.

With respect to the petition and the request for replaced, disguised or cladded the paper has the following responses.

2.6. Petitioners Wish: Northern parapet to be replaced:

2.7. The Design Manual for Road and Bridges (DMRB) is the design guidance by which both parapet walls have been built.

2.7.1. Adherence to the DBMR design manual is statutory.

2.7.2. Network Rail have undertaken the parapet wall design in accordance with the Design Manual for Road and Bridges Volume 2: Highway Design Substructures and special structures. The specific section which has been complied with is CL.3.45, Clause (V).

2.8. Design guidance specifies that all parapet walls over electrified railway lines need to be of a specific height, need to meet vehicle restraint criteria and need to be free of projections, greater than 30mm.

2.9. An exemption to design guidance was possible on the southern parapet wall. The existing parapet wall was of a stone construction. It was allowable that the required extension be constructed of like for like stone.

2.10. Due to the poor aesthetic and structural condition of the northern parapet wall, a decision was made to fully replace the northern parapet, as opposed to attach a parapet extension.

2.11. Two options, compliant with the standards, existed for the design of the proposed new northern parapet wall.

2.11.1. A smooth concrete wall. As per what has been constructed.

2.11.2. The second being two courses of brickwork.

2.12. Prior to the finalisation of the design philosophy for the parapet, consultation with the Community Council took place. During this consultation the Community Council outlined that their preferred option was the new concrete parapet.

2.13. This proposal was then agreed with the planners and officers through Stirling Councils planning and approvals processes.

2.14. A requirement of the preferred design of the northern parapet is that the inside face of the concrete parapet wall be entirely smooth, free from projections and free from footholds. Such design restrictions exist so that all road users are sufficiently protected.

2.15. Petitioners Wish: Newly replaced northern parapet to be disguised or cladded:

2.16. Retrofit of stone onto the constructed northern parapet is not possible, as:

2.16.1.The addition of thin masonry pieces to the parapet wall is not possible. Addition of such sections would make the section non-complaint, as pieces may become detached from the parapet and become a projectile if struck by a vehicle.

2.16.2. Any additional pieces attached to the wall would need to be of a sufficient thickness and physically tied into the concrete parapet however this would then have a number of consequential impacts.

2.16.2.1. Adding any substantial weight/loadings to the precast wing wall sections would require significant design works and the likely replacement of sections of the newly constructed bridge deck.

2.16.2.2. The existing wing walls were already extended in-situ, and if additional loadings were imposed, it is likely they would require further extension, which would consequently require a full reassessment of the existing bridges foundations.

— -

Please note that the Stirling Council Scheme of Establishment for Community Council includes:

Community Councils and individual Community Councillors have a duty under statute to represent the views of their local community. It is vital therefore, that they reflect the broad spectrum of opinion and interests of all sections of the community.

The general purpose of Community Councils is to act as a voice for their local area. This will involve them articulating the views and concerns of local people in their area on a wide range of issues of public concern and making representations to their local authority, other public sector bodies and private agencies on matters within their sphere of interest. It is essential that these views be demonstrated to be accurately representative of the community.

Accordingly, the Community Council will have in place, in consultation with the Council and other key stakeholders/partners, recognised consultative mechanisms to validate their views and devise strategies to secure greater involvement by all sectors of the community.

If you believe that the Dunblane Community Council has by making a decision on behalf of the community with respect to North Parapet without consulting the wider community of Dunblane and hence unable to demonstrate that the view the Dunblane Community Council gave can’t be be demonstrated to be accurately representative of the community, and hence were not compliant with the Scheme of Establishment. Then please do let Stirling Council know by contacting: info@stirling.gov.uk

Though please do complete the survey and let as many people in the community know about this as possible — https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/CZXFW3T

--

--

--

I am a Chartered Member of CISI, which is the UK’s leading securities and investment professional body. Alastair Majury resides locally in Dunblane.

Love podcasts or audiobooks? Learn on the go with our new app.

Recommended from Medium

The Top 10 Trending Crowdfunding Projects of May 15, 2018

WordPress Website Design With Elementor

Product Design isn’t Graphic Design

The fallacy of easy

Atomic design will disrupt your whole organization. Careful what you wish for.

Cheers! Effective But Creative Web Designs Live Forever

How to build a Minimum Viable Product

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Alastair Majury

Alastair Majury

I am a Chartered Member of CISI, which is the UK’s leading securities and investment professional body. Alastair Majury resides locally in Dunblane.

More from Medium

Why you must have your own Practical mental model.

Discussion on is “Is Google Making Us Stupid?

Elizabeth Warren’s War on Big Tech

Dear Sophie: What is the latest on IEP?