Last couple of days …

Yesterday, had a useful meeting with other elected representatives (parliamentary and council) and the Chair of the NCR Task Force about progress the group is making; in the evening attended a meeting of the River Crescent Residents’ Association, where issues discussed included the Riverside Nature Park, car speeding and maintenance of a local pathway. I am following up a number of issues for the Association.
Following complaints from residents about graffiti on the Kwik Fit building in Perth Road at Westfield Place, I contacted the company about the matter and have had the following positive feedback:
“This is an ongoing problem as soon as it is removed or painted over, new graffiti appears. I’ve asked our Operations to see what can be done to remove it or paint over it.”
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NCR, Magdalen Green, Surgery, Council meetings

It is nearly 11.30pm and, having got back from council committees at 8pm to spend three hours on mainly day job related work, am seriously tired, so I’ll keep this fairly short.
A good turnout at this morning’s Friends of Magdalen Green meeting – it was agreed to have a February meeting on ‘practical’ issues such as the damage to the Green (and do resident consultation on temporary actions that can be taken to alleviate the situation) and thereafter have a formal public meeting to launch the group. Together with two residents, I am meeting with a member of Leisure & Communities staff on Wednesday on the Green to look at the flooding issue.
At lunchtime, along with my colleague Cllr Helen Dick and many other local politicians, I met Nicol Stephen MSP (Deputy First Minister and Minister for Enterprise and Lifelong Learning) at NCR to discuss the situation. I was genuinely impressed with Nicol’s commitment and the willingness of all present – whatever their political persuasion – to agree to work together. Click on headline above to view more.
My surgery at Blackness Primary School tonight was rudely interrupted by a fire alarm! At council committees tonight, spoke at Leisure & Arts Services Committee, welcoming the provision of an “Ultimate” pitch at Buckingham Point, south of Magdalen Green. The Department has delivered a good result very promptly – good stuff!

Speeding issues and NCR latest

Firstly, my colleague Cllr Helen Dick & I are (along with elected representatives across the political spectrum) meeting Nicol Stephen MSP, the Enterprise Minister, on Monday about the NCR situation – read more by clicking the headline above.
I have today been advised about initial results with regard to the speed survey I had asked for on City Road (south of Cleghorn Street) following residents’ concerns about speeding vehicles. The results are not yet fully complete and the radar detection equipment is back on site so I hope to update residents on the full findings soon.
At the start of December, I raised with the Planning & Transportation Department the issue of the difficulties crossing Blackness Road near the Kelso Street steps (an area many Harris pupils cross the road at). I had asked that consideration again be given for a proper pedestrian crossing here. The Depatment require to speed survey the road here to see if a crossing can be provided and I have now had the following response – I will let residents know of progress as it happens:
“This survey has been identified and is on the list. In an effort to obtain a quicker result I will arrange a peak time manual count, say 8 -9am and 3.30 -4.30 pm, when staff resources are available, and I hope to get back to you soon.”

A Dark Day for our City

Got positive feedback today regarding flooding issues at Magdalen Green and intend meeting with Leisure & Communities staff next week on-site to see the detail of action taken and proposed to resolve matters. Additionally got feedback in relation to an unrelated flooding issue in part of Nethergate.
Today has been dominated by the devastating news of 650 job losses announced at NCR in the city. I am not the only politician in Dundee not just seriously concerned but really angry at the way a highly skilled workforce has been treated.
I have already spoken with Nicol Stephen MSP, Deputy First Minister and Enterprise Minister (who has been in all fairness very reactive, concerned and coming to Dundee on Monday to visit NCR and ensure the taskforce team is in place) and also to Cllr Jill Shimi, our council leader. I spoke on Radio Tay this afternoon (see http://www.dundee.prai.co.uk/news/000413.html) and made the points that its vital that there is swift and positive support for the workforce.