Plans to in­tro­duce park­ing per­mits in 19 streets ditched

Kentish Gazette Canterbury & District - - Letters And Opinion - By Joe Walker joe­walker@thek­m­ @Joe­walker17

Plans to ex­tend park­ing re­stric­tions across 19 streets in Wincheap have been shelved be­cause of a lack of sup­port from neigh­bours.

The council pro­posed adding the roads to its res­i­dents’ per­mit scheme in a bid to free up spa­ces of­ten pinched by com­muters avoid­ing city cen­tre park­ing charges.

House­hold­ers in the area had grown in­creas­ingly frus­trated with the sit­u­a­tion, with one ex­as­per­ated mo­torist said to have de­flated the tyres of a car parked out­side his home.

A pub­lic con­sul­ta­tion was launched, with res­i­dents told they would have to fork out ei­ther £60 or £83 to buy a per­mit if the re­stric­tions were in­tro­duced.

But de­spite let­ters be­ing sent to all homes and the pro­pos­als be­ing widely ad­ver­tised on so­cial me­dia, fewer than one in five peo- ple re­sponded. Of those, just half in­di­cated a de­sire to have res­i­dents’ park­ing.

The city council’s se­nior trans­porta­tion of­fi­cer, Richard Moore, said: “There is a small area, roughly bounded by Wincheap, Tu­dor Road, Mar­tyrs Field Road and York Road, to­gether with part of Ox­ford Road, where a higher pro­por­tion of sur­vey re­spon­dents were in favour of in­tro­duc­ing res­i­dents’ park­ing, but even in this area less than 20% of house­holds re­sponded to the sur­vey.

“Else­where, the re­sponses were more evenly bal­anced be­tween those who did and did not want res­i­dents’ park­ing to be in­tro­duced.

“Hav­ing dis­cussed the re­sults with the ward coun­cil­lors we have con­cluded that it is there­fore not pos­si­ble for us to rec­om­mend that the res­i­dents’ park­ing scheme is ex­tended be­cause the re­sponse does not give us a man­date to im­pose the costs of res­i­dents’ park­ing on all of the res­i­dents in the area.

“I know that this will dis­ap­point some of the res­i­dents who had been ask­ing for res­i­dents’ park­ing but, as we so of­ten find to be the case, the vo­cal mi­nor­ity do not nec­es­sary rep­re­sent the ma­jor­ity of res­i­dents.”

A pub­lic con­sul­ta­tion was also launched last month about chang­ing park­ing re­stric­tions in St Au­gus­tine’s Road.

Sit­u­ated off the New Dover Road, the street is pop­u­lar with mo­torists keen to take ad­van­tage of the four hours free park­ing of­fered.

The council pro­posed re­duc­ing the time limit to two hours and charg­ing peo­ple £1.50 an hour, but 18 of 24 re­spon­dents were against the plans.

“There was no man­date to pro­ceed with the idea,” council spokesman Rob Davies said.

“How­ever, a com­pro­mise sug­ges­tion has been put for­ward for the nine spa­ces clos­est to New Dover Road to be­come two-hour pay and dis­play bays. This will be con­sulted on in the forth­com­ing an­nual park­ing re­view.”

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