Parking provision in Weston-super-Mare town centre is ‘unacceptable’ with residents finding it ‘impossible’ to park
PUBLISHED: 13:00 20 June 2017
The amount of parking available to residents in Weston-super-Mare town centre is ‘unacceptable’, with people finding it ‘almost impossible’ to park outside their homes – according to a North Somerset councillor.
Central ward councillor Richard Nightingale is calling for more parking to be made available to town centre residents, with approximately just one parking space available per four Central ward residents.
Parking has become a hot topic since the council implemented its civil parking enforcement scheme in April – with enforcement now in the hands of the council rather than the police.
The Mercury last week reported tensions over parking in the town centre have continued to grow, with the council staff receiving abuse on the streets and social media.
Cllr Nightingale believes residents’ concerns over a lack of parking in his ward should be heard.
He said: “Parking for residents in the centre of Weston is unacceptable. There are approximately 1,200 people living in the town centre, with only on-street parking for roughly 350 cars.
“When residents have to compete with shoppers and workers in the town, it’s no wonder they find it almost impossible to park outside their homes.
“Better and easier parking simply can not come soon enough for town centre residents.”
The council is hoping to increase the amount of town-centre parking available with its Station Gateway project, with plans in place for a new multi-storey car park as part of the proposed train station revamp.
Cllr Nightingale supports the proposed multi-storey facility, but wants ‘greater parking provision’ where there is residential accommodation.
Fellow Central ward councillor Mike Bell said: “I’ve always been clear that we need cheaper off-street parking charges to encourage people to park in car parks, some free parking on-street to encourage shoppers and visitors, and a fair residents permit for people who live here, especially in the pay and display zone.
“The council’s parking strategy is shrouded in mystery and seems very incremental rather than offering step change. New car parks will not solve the problem on their own, unless the charging regime is fair. The council needs to show it is working with residents and businesses and not against them on this.”
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