Commuters and businesses owners urged to take part in parking review
Commuters and business owners are being urged to make their views about parking known, as Wiltshire Council launches its biggest ever consultation on the matter.
The last review, in 2010, saw parking tariffs increased and the cost of season tickets increased in many car parks across the county, in the face of recommendations from Wessex Chambers, individual Chambers of Commerce, and other business organisations.
Business owners are crossing their fingers that the latest review will not see a second wave of increases imposed on their staff and customers.
The consultation – which will be launched on Monday, 27 October – could see a move away from the current charging for parking based on four bands, to options based on individual car parks or town assessments.
These options will use factors such as usage of car parks, location, as well as looking at the wider economic and environmental issues. This approach gives the Council greater ability to manage car parking demand and supply.
The review will also consider a number of charging options, including first hour free parking, free after 4pm, Sunday charges, or evening charges as tools to enhance local communities’ ability to use their local services.
John Thomson, deputy leader and cabinet member responsible for sustainable transport, said: “This is a wide-ranging review of an issue which is key to the development of our towns and villages. We are looking at ways to make it easier for the public to pay for their parking through the use of new technology, such as paying by mobile phone instead of using cash, using websites to pay for parking and automatic number plate recognition.
“Our car parking review is comprehensive and is about much more than just cars, it is about enhancing the local economy, environment and providing value for money in our car parking services. We are keen to engage and work with local communities in order to provide them with the most appropriate facilities. I hope as many people as possible will get involved and tell us what they think.”
The consultation will be opened in two stages. On 27 October the strategy document and 14 town profiles will be available and on 10 November the survey and the charging summary will go live. The consultation will remain open until 16 January 2015.
All documentation will be available at http://consult.wiltshire.gov.uk/portal