Parking Charges Up over 25%

Elmbridge metersThe cost of parking in the borough’s car parks is set to rise from around 25% to 300% over the next three years.  On 8 July the Conservative cabinet decided to recommend that there would be increases across the board.  This evening the full council approved the cabinet’s recommendation using its Conservative majority.

I voted against.  My view is that car-park pricing should be developed using a clear and understandable logic that everyone could understand – even if they did not agree with some of the outcomes.  The current charging policy is not consistent across the borough nor it is based on clearly defined principles.  For more details click here.  As ever, your thoughts are very welcome.

6 replies on “Parking Charges Up over 25%”

Hi andrew. I have to say that i agree with increasing parking charges.Too many people complain about congestion and take no responsibility for their contribution to it. Maybe by putting up charges they will think twice about getting in their car for short journeys. The half hour charge in villages should be scrapped though-its so low its just irritating to have to go and pay. When my kids went to merrygoround nursery -in the church hall-youhad to go and get a ticket just to drop them off. Just annoying when youre there 2 mins and trying to get to work. The money raised should go to improving sustainable forms of transport rather than put in the councils central pot. Also, report states there are no community safety or equality issues raised. There are. For a woman walking home late at night from weybridge station it can feel very unsafe. Better lighting, cuttingback the trees and cctv would help until you get out of the wooded area. Use the money for that :).

Thank you for your comments. I agree in that it often perplexes me if reports say that there are no equality issues raised when, as you say, there clearly are. My reason for voting against the car park changes was because the policy is not clear. Is the primary aim for Elmbridge to use car-park charges to reduce council tax? Is it to maximize car-park utility? Is it, as you say, to encourage people to cycle. Would it be approporaite that any surpuses are ringfenced for each town – to be spent in that town alone (Weybridge would benefit greatly from such a policy because we produce half of Elmbridge’s car-park surplus. Claygate makes a loss on its car-parks – so how would that work? Would it be appropriate for any borough-wide surplus to be earmarked for transport related projects. Should season-ticket holders have such large discounts? Should worker season-ticket discounts be so large? Should all Elmbridge-run car-parks be included – many Elmbridge car-parks are free, for example, Xcel, Hurst Pool and Oxshott Woods? Should there be a variety of car space widths – so that smaller cars pay less? I think that these and many other issues need to be clearly stated.

you are forcing people to park in roads that are not made for daily parking you are getting back at people ho did not vote for the liberal party, just resign

Thank you for your interesting comment. I do not understand what makes you say that I am forcing people to park on on the street. Please explain. By the way the Liberal Democrats locally have doubled our membership since the national elections and yesterday we won three by-elections.

To increase town centre parking charges is complete madness. The opposite should be the case if we are to be able to regenerate the centres of our towns in Elmbridge.

As you know, I voted against the proposed car-park charge increase. However, imagine that we made all of the municipal car-parks free (Baker Street, Churchfields, Heath North, Heath South, Monument Hill and Oatlands). Would free parking bring back the three shoe shops, the book shop, the butcher, the veg shop and the party shop that we used to have? The Heath car parks are often full all day (especially Heath North) surely reducing the charges for these car parks would only benefit the drivers who arrive at six in the morning because the car parks would be full by seven.

I undertook a survey a couple of years ago. I asked residents in and around Ellesmere Road where they shopped. The broad response was that they went to the Waitrose in Hersham rather than the Waitrose in Weybridge. The overwhelming reason given was not the cost of the car parks but the very heavy traffic in Weybridge. Hersham has a by-pass and Weybridge does not (although one was planned in the seventies).

Retail business people in Weybridge tell me that during the construction of Morrisons, when the traffic was particularly bad, their takings were down considerably and are now recovering. There were no changes in car-park charges during this time – the problem was caused by the grind-locked traffic. We can deal with the traffic but, as ever, we need to want to do so. Parking is a problem but it is the traffic which seems to affect people’s decision as to where they want to shop.

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