Parking crisis - 'change the plan'

SERIOUS concerns about the lack of parking in Portishead's new developments could see changes made to the North Somerset Replacement Local Plan

SERIOUS concerns about the lack of parking in Portishead's new developments could see changes made to the North Somerset Replacement Local Plan.Councillors in the town are pressing North Somerset legal chiefs to see whether changes can be made to the official blueprint, which was rubber stamped earlier this year.The local plan document implements all national and regional planning policies, interpreting them into specific planning guidelines for the district.All planning decisions are made in accordance with the plan, which stays in force until 2011.Now following mounting concern about the level of parking included as part of large housing and commercial developments in Portishead, the authority's legal chiefs are being asked whether the plan can be amended.Councillors want to increase the number of car parking spaces included in each development.Currently Government guidelines, and the authority's local plan, says there should be one parking space per two bedroom dwelling, two spaces for a three bedroom property and three spaces for a four bedroom property. Portishead Councillor Reyna Knight said: "When planning applications are received the main sticking point is always parking."There is not sufficient or good enough public transport links out of Portishead so to live here, you have to own a car."A lot of the problems could be solved by re-opening the railway."By reviewing the local plan it would allow us to re-investigate what levels of parking are needed."Council officers are now being asked to prepare a report on whether the local plan can be changed which will be presented to members of the north area planning committee at its next meeting.


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