Mancunian Way and Pomona

Have taken rather a longer break from the blog than I originally intended but that at least means there is no shortage of things to write about. Will talk today about two current issues, one the very large hole in the road that suddenly appeared on the Mancunian Way, the other a misunderstanding about devolution in relation to Pomona Island.

The collapse of the Mancunian Way could not have happened at a worse time. School holidays are a traditional time for getting significant amounts of highway maintenance work done, but taken alongside the other longer term Metrolink and cross-city bus works taking place in the city centre, we were already creaking at the seams.

As a result of the hole, we have already postponed a number of other bits of work that were due to start this month. We've tried to minimise the impact of work already under way. We're maximising the amount of information available to the public via the Council's website, and we are doing everything we can to get some use of the Mancunian Way and the hole fixed as quickly as possible, including getting United Utilities to do twenty four hour working.

I've had a bit of Twitter noise lately regarding a planning application for housing on Pomona Island which lies just over the city's border in Trafford. The essence of the noise is that on the basis of DevoManc either the City Council or the Combined Authority or both should seek to interfere in the decision-making of Trafford Council. This would be totally contrary to the devolution principles which are absolutely not about centralisation of power in Greater Manchester, but rather the devolution of power from Whitehall to GM.

Of course, as an affected neighbour, Manchester has the right to comment on and indeed if it feels minded to, to object to the Pomona planning application. That is not something I would normally be involved in as it would be dealt with politically by the Executive Member with the planning brief. In the not so distant past we have even taken court action regarding planning proposals in other jurisdictions - the Trafford Centre springs to mind. However the right to determine the planning application lies squarely with Trafford Council, and they have to do that through a quasi-judicial process, measuring the proposals against their own core strategy.

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