A meeting of Oldmeldrum Business Association, last night, unveiled the results of a significant survey of residents, shoppers and users of the Town Centre in Oldmeldrum. The Royal British Legion club was the venue for the Association member Pat Robbins to present the analysis of the hundreds of responses to the survey gathered earlier in the year.
Local Oldmeldrum and Mid Formartine Councillor Paul Johnston, said: “This information collected by the Business Association is very important in my view. It should inform the Council of local thinking. It has been collected and analysed well and we should be using it to try and find solutions and acceptable measures in the centre of Oldmeldrum.”
The meeting was well attended, including senior Council officials who gave a positive response to the presentation.
“The Council has given some positive response at the meeting and has already been working with the business Association and the Community Council to find changes that will help.” said Paul. “I had urged them to look at reducing traffic speeds of vehicles entering the Square from each direction and measures to avoid rat runs and increase safety. Safety was an issue brought out clearly in the survey, which backs up the anecdotal evidence.”
The Council had agreed to introduce car parking changes on South Road. The spaces created, will they believe, slow traffic movements on the road and increase the number of spaces for longer term parking especially for business employees in the centre. The Council is moving to consider 45min waiting or similar within the Square itself. recently, the meeting was told, the Community Council in response to the problems and supporting local residents down in Rosebank/Meadowbank, agreed to ask the Council to reverse the direction of the one way street outside Morris’ Hotel (Jocks) to stop rat running. This would be accompanied by a right turn only from Back Lane onto Rosebank.
Council Officials also confirmed the intention to permit vehicles to exit the Baker Street Car Park back out onto Urquhart Road again, with a right turn only manoeuvre, ending the problem of the use of Baker Street as the sole exit past Nathalan Court and joining with the difficult Junction with the Cowgate.
Councillor Johnston was however, critical of Aberdeenshire Council in failing to respond within reasonable time scales to the promised handrail on steps within the Square, previously agreed nearly a year ago.
“There are two sets of steps that cause problems, those nearest the Urquhart Road junction were supposed to have rails installed as they remain dangerous for the disabled. I am disappointed the Council has moved so slowly and am urging them to fit the rails as soon as possible”. The Councillor said the steps outside Stewart And Watson solicitors, needed to be looked as either removed or rails added as recent fall by elderly people indicated this was a problem as suspected.
“All in all, I think the survey is very helpful and while most people feel that the whole scheme does not need to be removed – it does need improvement and we have a big job still to do to get things right.”