Friday, 7 December 2018

Restricting parking in Sidmouth > residents against commuters and tourists: part two

Earlier in the summer, the County Council asked residents if they'd like to restrict parking to themselves - and unsurprisingly, most areas asked said yes:
Futures Forum: Restricting parking in Sidmouth > residents against commuters and tourists

This competition over parking spaces is not confined to Sidmouth, though:
Why Bath should have 'world's first city wide resident friendly parking zones' - Bath Chronicle
Parking Permits Won’t Solve New York’s Parking Crunch If They’re Dirt Cheap – Streetsblog New York City
Oslo's car ban sounded simple enough. Then the backlash began | Cities | The Guardian
Concern suburb becoming car park | Otago Daily Times Online News

The County Council is ready to bring in changes to parking - but there are clear reservations:

Residents’ parking zones could be coming to the centre of Sidmouth

It follows support from a maildrop consultation by the county council earlier in the year

Daniel Clark Local Democracy Reporter
7 DEC 2018

Residents parking could soon be introduced in the centre of Sidmouth.

Following a maildrop exercise in June that showed that there was widespread support for proposals, councillors on Friday morning agreed to approve the advertising of a traffic regulation order to introduce residents' parking in the town.

Final details of the roads that may be included have not yet been decided, and the consultation phase would not necessarily see residents' parking introduced.

Interactive map showing which areas of Sidmouth supported the proposals for a Residents' Parking Scheme following a maildrop in June - - in green if more than 50 per cent supported it, in red if less than 50 per cent supported it, and in yellow if 50 per cent supported it

But Cllr Stuart Hughes, chairman of the East Devon Highways and Traffic Orders Committee said that likely the area would stretch from Victoria Road in the North, Riverside Road to the East, Station Road to the West and the Esplanade to the South.

A separate consultation exercise will be undertaken in Sidford after the maildrop suggested a small number of roads in the village would be in favour of residents parking. Homes north of the A3052 were not initially consulted on during the maildrop.

Mike Jones, Senior Devon County Council Highways Officer, told councillors that the results of the maildrop showed that the closer to the town centre and the seafront, the higher the approval in general for the concept of residents parking. In total, 51.1 per cent of respondents were in favour and 48.9 per cent were opposed, although only 9.3 per cent of households responded.

A rough outline in blue of which roads could be included in the residents parking scheme

Cllr Hughes said that he was happy to proceed with the advertising of a traffic regulation order to introduce a residents parking scheme in areas of Sidmouth and for further consultation in Sidford.

It was unanimously agreed to progress with the proposals and that the area in proximity to the town centre is progressed to the statutory consultation stage The development of a residents' parking scheme will also need to provide a mix of residents only spaces and limited waiting spaces, which should include pay and display availability for short-term visitors as well.

Results of the residents parking consultation

But some councillors raised concerns about how the scheme would work in practice.

Cllr Sara Randall-Johnson said: “If you want to keep healthy market and coastal towns, there is a need to provide parking for visitors, so we don’t want to strangle the economy.”

And Cllr Richard Scott added that residents parking schemes are ‘not a magic wand to solve everyone’s parking problems’. He added: “If you introduce it, you just push the parking problems to other roads, and people also have a right to drive into a town. Just because you buy a home doesn’t entitle you to ownership of the highway outside, and visitors have a right to use the tarmac outside the house. A residents parking scheme doesn’t guarantee you a parking space and that aspect needs to be understood by residents as well.”

The response of each road in Sidmouth to the consultation

The response of each road in Sidmouth to the consultation

The report to the committee by Meg Booth, Chief Officer for Highways, Infrastructure Development and Waste added: “The support for the introduction of residents parking increases closer to the core business area of the town centre.

“It is recommended that the area in proximity to the town centre is progressed to the statutory consultation stage, subject to further discussion with the local member. The development of a residents parking scheme should also investigate and incorporate the additional concerns raised during the initial consultation where related to on-street parking if appropriate.”

Residents Parking sign

It added: "A total of 893 responses were received during the consultation period. Of these responses 563 indicated that there was a parking problem in their area, with 293 believing this was caused by commuters and 433 supported the principle of residents parking in their street/area.

“Of the 847 responses to Question 4 – Do you support or oppose the introduction of residents parking restrictions to my street/area, 433 (51.1 per cent) indicated support and 414 (48.9 per cent) opposed. Further analysis shows that support for the introduction of residents parking increases closer to the core business area of the town centre.

“This correlates closely with areas where private off-street parking is limited and supports the principle that schemes should improve access for residents without off street parking facilities."


DaryS said...

The same issue is present in many other cities visited by tourists.
Tourists arrive by plane or car, so they need a place to park the vehicle in order to visit the town by foot.
A large number of vehicles in any town is also a major issue for the public healthy due to the massive air pollution created by the cars.
On https://www.alternative-energies.net/how-to-reduce-air-pollution-in-your-city-the-cheapest-and-healthiest-way/ I read an article about the air pollution created in towns by the large number of vehicles (used by residents and tourists), and also the solutions to overcome the parking issues.

Jeremy Woodward said...

Thanks very much for getting back, DaryS
Yes, as you say: we do need to do something about the pollution this all causes.
I've reposted your comments, plus the article which makes the point very clearly and in such an obvious way:
Thanks again