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Parking, again

Pay and display charges after 6pm get the bum's rush, but what about your own doorstep, asks Larry Neild

Published on August 18th 2010.


Parking, again

NO sooner had a council working party report suggested charging for evening parking in the city centre, Labour Cabinet regeneration member Malcolm Kennedy was forced to issue a statement saying street parking after 6pm will remain free.

Should Liverpool charge for permits? Of course we should. The working party is thinking in terms of £20 for each permit. I’d say that’s the bargain of a lifetime

Two years after Liverpool Confidential started a virtual roadside revolution when the idea was first mooted, it’s come back again, this time as one of the recommendations from a working party set up to look at parking issues.

Two years ago the city’s night time economy gave a resounding no, warning of the harm to the growing evening leisure trade of making people pay.

Would you feed four quid into a city centre meter at the start of a night out? Or would you say, nah, we’ll hire a video get a bottle of wine and stay in, or go up to the Odeon at Switch Islansd

Few cities charge for evening parking because they want to encourage people to spend, spend, spend in restaurants, theatres, cinemas and bars, workplaces for thousands of people.

Another recommendation from the Parking Scrutiny Panel, though, has a wider implication. Should people living in areas where there are resident parking schemes have to pay for their permits?

Liverpool is one of the few major cities to still offer free permits. Ye the cash-strapped council pays over £500,000 a year to administer residents parking schemes.

Should Liverpool charge for permits? Of course we should. The working party is thinking in terms of £20 for each permit. I’d say that’s the bargain of a lifetime.Currently people living in and around Allerton Road and leafy L18 AND L19 are demanding residents parking schemes.

Why should car-less families in Dovecot and Norris Green, through their council tax, pay the cost of enabling two-car residents of ‘Muesli Hill’ to have exclusive parking rights?

Go to Manchester and it will set you back as much as £347 if you live in the city centre.

There are around 42,500 permits so far issued by the city council and if each paid £20 it would rake in £850,000 – more than paying the running costs.

I don’t like residents’ parking schemes unless they are absolutely necessary and even then until every other available option (enforcement, etc) has been attempted.

My theory is that one day every part of Liverpool will be covered by residents parking schemes, and none of us will need cars. Because when we leave our own street there will be nowhere we can legally park.

People demanding permit schemes need to realise traffic wardens don’t take prisoners or turn a blind eye. Nor should they. If you have a birthday party and your partygoers park, without displaying one of the gold-dust permits, they risk being fined.

Each house will receive a permit for each vehicle registered at that address and also have a single visitor permit that should be displayed on the visitor’s car to avoid a penalty ticket.

A one-guest party may seem ideal for Mr Bean, but is that what the rest of us really want to see?

Family visits, for ever more, would have to be organised with military precision to ensure nobody risked a ticket, or even worse having their car towed away to a faraway compound.

And that initial £20 ‘to cover administrative charges’ could soon start to rise as it becomes apparent it is represents a pot of roadside gold.

Will it happen? Look at the charge overs charge for residents’ parking permits: York £88, Chester £60, Sheffield £36, Glasgow £350 city centre, others £135, Edinburgh £160 city centre, others £80, Cambridge £50, Bristol £50, Birmingham £180.

The Beatles may have sung “the best things in life are free”. But sadly in their hometown that won’t extend to free parking for much longer.

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8 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

AnonymousAugust 17th 2010.

Until very recently there was a nice little car park off Upper Parliament Street in front of St James Mount. It was a lovely little oasis for people wa nting to park and walk. There were no doubt complaints from people saying park users were unable to park there because all-day commuters were hogging the place. Well the complainers really got their come-uppance. As you'd expect the NFPINL brigade (that's NoFreeParkingInLiverpool) had the perfect solution. They've blocked off the car park, so now nobody can use it. Clever one that, must take some brain power.

L18August 17th 2010.

Parking for residents is a nightmare in and around Allerton Road, day and night, seven days a week. The council has caused this by allowing so many restaurants and bars, so why on earth should the long suffering residents have to pay for the privilege of parking near their own homes. I think there should be a tax on the bars and restaurants so they foot the bill. If a resident's parking scheme results in the bars closing then I for one say, so much the better.

RoadRageAugust 17th 2010.

Not so many years ago Liverpool was a traffic-jam free zone. No queues anywhere, loads of alternative ways of getting from A to B, plenty of parking space, some of it free even in the city centre. Then 'they' moved in saying traffic was clogging up the air, so they started to close down routes. Now we have constant traffic clogging up the air more than ever. They went further and started to make it difficult to park your car. Please stop treating motorists like criminals. Go by bus, may be the cry. But I don't want to sit on a scruffy bus with people coughing and spluttering all over the place. Lets turn the clock back just 10 years and return to the freedom of the roads we used to enjoy in Liverpool.

L18August 17th 2010.

Parking for residents is a nightmare in and around Allerton Road, day and night, seven days a week. The council has caused this by allowing so many restaurants and bars, so why on earth should the long suffering residents have to pay for the privilege of parking near their own homes. I think there should be a tax on the bars and restaurants so they foot the bill. If a resident's parking scheme results in the bars closing then I for one say, so much the better.

Urbane BlighterAugust 17th 2010.

As paying for daytime parking deters customers from visiting the shops, the shops will close and be replaced with seedy bars and restaurants that open only in the evening, the rents will go up and the last of the shops will go then the once-proud Allerton Road will just be another urine-stained Skid Row as Lark Lane is becoming.

OneRuleforAllAugust 17th 2010.

Councillors have passes allowing free parking, for use when they are on 'official business'. Council managers have free or subsidised parking passes. The councillors and officials wanting to impose costly regimes on us ordinary citizens should have to follow the rules they want for us. Let them queue and fight for spaces, and pay out of their own pockets at the same levels they expect us to pay. Not gonna happen, is it?

driving me madAugust 17th 2010.

AD is spot on - let's do away with parking schemes. They are a nuisance, even for residents. And remember when a charge is brought in, as it surely will, the annual fee will go up and up and up. It's a cash cow waiting to be milked.

AnonymousAugust 17th 2010.

I cannot see the point of all that unpopular vandalism and demolition to widen Edge Lane to speed motorway traffic into the city centre when the centre is already congested with very slow traffic.

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