Purpose and Priorities
The Roads and Environment Service is a collection of various Portfolio Groupings that consists of:
- Roads Network Operations (includes statutory management of Roads, Street Lighting and Winter Maintenance Operations)
- Roads Technical and Engineering (includes statutory Roadworks coordination, inspections and management of traffic signals, roads related structures, bridges, flood risk management, and road safety)
- Streetscene Technical Support (includes management of Parks & Open Space Projects, Arboriculture and Bereavement Services)
- Streetscene Operations (includes management of statutory Street Cleansing functions, Grounds Maintenance and Cemetery Operations)
- Mugdock Country Park (includes Countryside Rangers Service)
Cooperatively and individually each portfolio will work with internal and external partners to contribute to the delivery of the Council and Community Planning Partner’s overarching Local Outcome Improvement Plan as well as the Councils six agreed Local Outcomes:
The combined Roads Teams will seek to manage and maintain the transport network and associated infrastructure by recognising and adhering to relevant legislation and statutory obligations which in turn allows residents, employees and visitors to access jobs, businesses, communities, schools, further education and all other amenities via a safe and well-maintained network. In addition, the team will support projects intended to improve the strength of our town centres and commitments to the Climate Change Actions that will allow the Services to move toward more sustainable service delivery.
The Environment Teams provide a broad range of services that touch all communities and individuals working, living and visiting East Dunbartonshire.
This we aim to do by:
- providing good quality, well maintained and safe movement for all modes of transport for all residents, visitors and employees.
- delivering and maintaining on and off-road active travel infrastructure that gives choice and encourages a change in travel behaviour;
- managing and maintain the adopted Carriageway and Footway network.
- Management on and off-street parking provision in our town centres; and
- Engage with communities through consultation and conversation to shape the design and delivery of services.
- Manage adopted carriageways, footway, footpaths, open spaces and parks through seasonal cyclical programmes, service level agreements, Street Cleaning operations, countryside verge maintenance and the reintroduction of the Care of Garden Service.
- Provide burial space and bereavement services as well as strategic cemetery development and extensions to meet the projected needs of the various communities and settlements.
- Project manage and implement strategic projects as prioritised within key Strategic documents such as the Council’s Climate Change Action Plan, Open Space Strategy, Local Biodiversity Action Plan, Green Network, Tree Management Policy, and Play Park Action Plan in addition to statutory provision through an approved Food Growing Strategy.
The Service remains committed to making a strong contribution to the community planning partnership and the ‘place’ approach in line with Community Empowerment Act which provides a greater role for community planning partners in the delivery of local outcomes.
The Services will continue to review process and procedures to identify ways in which to enhance performance of all Service provision through our processes, procedures and most importantly through our staff thus providing a better customer experience.
The Service continues to be faced with numerous challenges over the coming years, but this also provides opportunities to monitor and improve service delivery to the settlements, communities, and residents via some of the key strategic priorities are summarised within this section:
- Provide a quality Street Cleansing service via our Streetscene Operational Teams to our residents, complying with the statutory objectives of Environmental Protection Act 1990 and Code of Practice on Litter and Refuse 2018 (COPLAR).
- Prioritise and implement actions identified from the Strategic and Operational Play Area Action Plan (PAAP) which will seek to improve recreational facilities for park users, and to look at innovative use of parkland for community use and surface water management considering the Community Empowerment Bill and Sustainability duties. This will be further enhanced in 2023 through the updating of the 2019 PAAP methodology and undertaking a Play Sufficiency Assessment/
- Maintain the Council’s Tree assets, through sustainable tree management works and planting programmes, as per the Council’s Duty of Care via the Councils Tree Management Policy. The work will also include surveys to ascertain the extent of Ash dieback surveys in council open space and throughout the roads network.
- Provision of allotments to meet local demand as per statutory requirements of the Community Empowerment Act and an approved Food Growing Strategy. Grant funding will be utilised to provide a new Allotment & Community Growing Officer.
- Work in partnership with Statutory bodies (e.g. SEPA) to improve water quality and morphology through River Basin Management Planning objectives, and fulfil actions in line with the Council’s proposed Climate Action Plan. Works will focus on three main projects
- Glazert River
- Kelvin Tributaries (Allander/Luggie/Parkburn sections)
- Partnership working to ascertain opportunities along the Kelvin Valley (Green Action Trust, Glasgow City Council and North Lanarkshire Council).
- Maintain a safe, efficient, and effective road network working in partnership with other agencies to ensure National, Regional and Local outcomes are achievable in line with the funding available:
- Transport Scotland
- Glasgow City Region - Transport and Connectivity Portfolio Working Group
- Office of the Scottish Road Works Commissioner
- Society of Chief Officers of Transportation in Scotland – SCOTS
- Roads and Utilities Committee (Scotland) – RAUCS
- Strathclyde Partnership for Transport – SPT
- Roads Collaboration Programme
- Association for Public Sector Excellence – APSE
- Scottish Environmental Protection Agency – SEPA
- Contribute to the East Dunbartonshire City Deal Projects as required and directed by the Project Board.
- Work to the Council Winter Maintenance Policy to ensure that vehicle and pedestrian transport networks stay open during periods of severe weather events and that a safe route to priority locations remain open as identified within the policy.
- Continue to review and improve roads and lighting infrastructure with details included in the Roads Asset Management Plan (RAMP).
- Review, update, and expand the Councils Roads Inspection and Maintenance Policy to include all relevant roads assets.
- Contribute as required to the aspirations and actions set out within the Council’s Local Transport Strategy and Active Travel Strategy.
- Deliver a revised strategy for Mugdock Country Park that ensure that it remains an attractive destination for residents and visitors.
- Create a Cemetery Strategy that outlines the Services commitment as the local Burial Authority to provide suitable provision for all settlements, communities and residents that meet their needs now and in the future.
Work of the Teams
Streetscene Technical Support Team
The Streetscene Technical Support Team provide a range of technical support services, including, project management of a range of outdoor related projects such as cemetery extensions and construction, play-park construction, woodland projects, biodiversity enhancement and habitat creation/restoration, allotment construction etc. The team implement projects from the following strategies: Local Biodiversity Action Plan, Open Space Strategy, Green Network, Local Outcome Improvement Plan, Play Park Action Plan, Food Growing Strategy (draft) and Woodland in around Towns. More recently the teamwork in partnership to develop flood mitigation and river naturalisation projects where there are biodiversity considerations and multi benefit opportunities for habitat restoration, access improvements and open space enhancements utilising nature based solutions. The Strategic team also deals with Cemetery management and record keeping along with development of Cemetery Strategy and park management plans, open space enquiries and arboriculture services as well as audit reviews for open space and street cleaning (APSE/LEAMS), estimating, unauthorised advertising and bill of quantities records. The team oversee contracts relating to open space projects and service level agreements such as pitch maintenance and tree works. There is a significant amount of community development work and work on developing litter awareness and community litter picking days with community groups and residents. The team act as planning consultees for open space issues in Planning developments submitted to the Council and spending of capital from Planning gain.
Streetscene Operations Team
The Streetscene Operations Team is located across three geographical areas providing a range of grounds maintenance, street cleaning and cemetery provision to East Dunbartonshire. This includes seasonal deployment of staff to deal with seasonal priorities. Summer months includes open-space and care of gardens grass/hedge cutting, shrub and flower bed maintenance as well as daily litter picking operations and pitch lining and inspection. Winter months focuses on preparation for the coming spring and summer months, leaf fall and support to the council’s winter maintenance programme. The Service also complete street cleansing service including maintenance of litter bins, mechanical sweeping, and litter removal.
Roads Technical & Engineering Services
The Roads Technical and Engineering Team are responsible strategically for the delivery of various roads related tasks;
- Service administration and policy development for Road Construction Consents (RCC), co-ordination of road works, skip and road occupation permits
- Flood Risk Assessment (FRA) and mitigation with internal and external stakeholders, including capital spend
- The delivery of new drainage solutions and the maintenance of existing drainage infrastructure
- Inspection and maintenance of bridges, roads related structure e.g. retaining walls and culverts.
- Road safety
- Traffic management
- Traffic signals
- Commercial activity within the adopted road network
Roads Network Operations
The Roads Network Team have a statutory responsibility to manage and maintain the roads and street lighting assets. The key areas of responsibility are:
- The provision and delivery of the Roads Inspection and Maintenance Policy that aim to improve the overall safety and condition of the road network through a planned, risk based, asset management approach to all of our maintenance activities ensuring resources are targeted to the area’s most in need and those which provide the greatest overall benefit to our customers.
- The provision and delivery of the Council’s Winter Maintenance Policy is a key element of the Roads Service’s operational responsibilities incorporating our response to winter gritting, flooding and any associated seasonal emergencies.
- The maintenance to our road network through repairs and improvement works by delivering a high quality, value for money programme for carriageway and footways using both conventional resurfacing and a range of propriety treatments such as surface dressing which will extend the life of the existing surface, prevent further deterioration and improve skid resistance for all our road users.
- Minimise the risk to all road users through a practical approach to routine cyclic maintenance and reactive repairs to both roads and street lighting assets.
- The Roads Operations team also deliver a capital improvement programme that provides a comprehensive upgrade of the existing lighting infrastructure and as part of these schemes, we also continue the introduction of LED lanterns.
The Roads Network Operations Team have returned to a full operational return following the H&S restrictions brought in to manage Welfare and Transportation of staff. The Service has worked hard to backfill a number of technical and operational vacancies to allow the teams to move into the 2023/24 financial year with its core structure in place to deliver both maintenance and capital projects.
Mugdock Country Park
Mugdock Country Park is a major park attraction on the boundary of Stirling and East Dunbartonshire and maintained by East Dunbartonshire Council on a current 50 year lease agreement with Stirling. The park receives more than 600,000 visitors every year. Staff at the park have wide range roles including Visitor Attraction staff, Wardens, and the Countryside Ranger Service. Offering a diverse range of self-led and led activities throughout the year, the park encourages families, education and leisure groups to interact and gain a better appreciation of their local environment including trails and walks
The park’s events programme offers many organised activities. It is separated into two interest areas – Countryside Activities (educational and leisure topics) and Arts Programme (film, theatre & recital). Services are provided by existing park businesses and also by outdoor providers who use the park to run activities both for children and adults. Voluntary and charity groups also use the park extensively for their events.
In 2022 and early 2023 the park completed the updated the Mugdock Country Park Strategy which identified and prioritise actions for park improvements, following public consultation going forward.
The main service delivery is as follows:
- Management of 270 hectares of country park for the enjoyment of over 600,000 visitors each year
- Visitor Centre with 7 day public access
- Delivering of programmes of environmental education to children and young people
- Promotion of Mugdock as an access point to the wider countryside for recreation and health benefits
- Facilitation of a wide range of park based events
- Supporting of a growing number of park based businesses
- Facilitating the development of sites within the park including
- Craigend Castle and surrounding area
- Observatory in partnership with the Astronomical Society of Glasgow
- Relocation of Visitor Centre to empty Courtyard unit
- Development at the Walled Garden
- Measure customer satisfaction levels
Key Improvement Actions for 2023 - 2024
The under noted is a summary of the Key Improvement Actions for the duration of the plan and are based on the Services Strategic Priorities.
Streetscene Technical Support Team
- Implement actions identified from the Strategic and Operational Play Area Action Plan
- Inspect, review, and maintain the Council’s Tree assets, through sustainable tree management works; arrange survey of open space and roadside to identify and provide an assessment of ash dieback and recommendation for tree works and replanting.
- Increase the number of allotment locations and plots available to meet local demand. Finalise and implement projects relating to food growing at Etive Park (Bishopbriggs) and Craigfoot Field (Milton of Campsie, subject to planning permission).
- Carry out an assessment of potential new tree and meadow planting sites in conjunction with the Green Action Trust. In line with the Clyde Climate Project priorities, Bishopbriggs will be the focus of the pilot project.
- Implementation of projects funded from the Scottish Government Play and Nature Restoration capital grant award.
- Devise and seek to deliver a suitable Cemetery Strategy with associated Action Plan.
- Work with the Flood Risk Officer to improve water bodies to address climate change and increase capacity to assist with flood mitigation.
Roads Technical & Engineering Team
- Maintain the bridges and retaining wall database to ensure there is proper accounting for these assets.
- Improve publicly available information via the Council Web Site including footway gritting routes and Traffic Regulation Orders (TRO) locations
- Contribute to City Deal and Traffic & Transport Projects e.g., Westerhill Development Road and Canniesburn Toll Improvements
Roads Network Operations Team
- Inspect and maintain the adopted Carriageway and Footway network throughout East Dunbartonshire
- Review the Council Winter Maintenance Policy to ensure it is updated and remains relevant
- Review Asset Management Plan (RAMP) to improve roads and lighting infrastructure
- Review update and expand the Councils Roads Inspection and Maintenance Policy
Mugdock Country Park
- Commence the delivery of the Mugdock Country Park Strategy with associated Action Plan