Car parking visitor permit charges review

The impact of an increase to the cost of visitor car parking permits in the St Albans District is to be reviewed.

The price of a single-use permit for streets that form part of a Controlled Parking Zone (CPZ) rose from a minimum 37p to £1.30 earlier this year.

This rise was due to the withdrawal by St Albans City and District Council of four-hour visitor parking permits. They had cost £3.70 for a book of ten – the equivalent of 37p each.

Vouchers are now only available at a cost £13 for a book, £1.30 each, although they can cover a whole day.

A report on parking permits was considered by the Council’s Community, Environment and Sport Scrutiny Committee at its meeting on Thursday 7 September.

After a debate, members decided to ask the Car Parking Working Party to review the impact of the changes at its meeting next month.

They have also been asked to investigate how the scheme could be amended to assist those residents who are less able to pay.

Councillor Anthony Rowlands, the Committee’s Chair, said: “This was a significant rise for many of our residents and I have been told some are struggling with it. (more…)

Delayed district council posting to ‘ladder roads’

The letters were supposed to have been mailed before Christmas. The District Council has admitted that it did not stick to the deadlines it gave ward councillors and has sent us this note:

The letters for the Ladder Roads consultation have now been sent down to the Council’s post room.  Due to the number of letters these will be sent out in stages over the next week.The documents will be on the Council’s website under  from tomorrow. The closing date for responses is 3 February.

Parking update

Message from the District Council (see important note at the bottom regarding updates)

The responses to the residents parking survey have now been reviewed.  It has taken some time to review the responses as large area was considered to ensure that all residents that could potentially be affected by parking issues could provide feedback.  The overall response rate was 73% with 47% wanting some restrictions, 49% did not want restrictions and 4% undecided.  The responses then have been reviewed on a street by street basis and it was clear that some roads were in favour of controls.  These roads are located closest to the rail station and Hatfield Road.  It is therefore been recommended to progress residents parking in the areas highlighted below and in the attached maps.

Arthur Road

Brampton Road

Burnham Road

Clarence Road

Gainsborough Avenue

Glenferrie Road

Harlesden Road

Jennings Road (From No 1 to the junction with Churchill Road)

Park Avenue

Royal Road

Sandfield Road

York Road

Harlesden Road and Burnham Road responses did indicate that more residents were in favour of no controls, however as roads around the area have the potential to be controlled then there is a potential for displacement into these roads.

The next stage will now be for residents to be consulted on the design on the scheme so that feedback can be received and amendments considered.  Should a road strongly reject the proposals they can be removed from the scheme.

Note: the maps referred to are below.

Revised 1 Revised 2

Important note

The following streets will also be consulted as part of the next stage:

Woodstock Road South (omitted by the Council in error)

Blenheim Road and Sefton Close (added because of representations made by residents)

Sunderland Avenue (added because of representations made by residents)

More resource for local parking schemes after Lib Dem amendment

A Liberal Democrat budget amendment was agreed by St Albans District Council last night which would provide an additional staff member to help with the enormous backlog of parking schemes.

Lib Dem parking spokesperson Gerard McHale said: ‘Again we proposed this last year and were defeated – so we are pleased that it went through  this time.

‘There is a huge appetite for sorting out parking schemes, from the introduction of new controlled parking zones to dealing with very specific  instances like disabled parking bays.

‘A particular problem is parking by commuters – both those using the stations and those driving  into town centres. Hopefully the extra resource can speed up the delivery of schemes where local people have been demanding action.’

Clarence Park parking: time for action not words

Local councillor Chris White has criticised the District Council for dragging its feet over commuter parking in Clarence Park.

Chris said: ‘We have know for some time that a local business is abusing this facility and telling its visitors to use the Park. We also know that railway commuters are using it.

‘This is stopping local people using the Park for the purposes it was designed for.’

He added: ‘To add insult to injury a brand new set of notices has been installed advertising a set of parking rules which clearly don’t work.

‘And the recent meeting for the council’s own Car Parking Working party – which is supposed to look after these things – failed to include anything about it on the agenda despite the fact that I had long since raised this on behalf of local residents.’

He concluded: ‘As usual the portfolio holder for parking is totally out of touch with what is going in in St Albans’.

Investment in parking in St Albans District

Note from the district council

Major equipment upgrade for District’s parking facilities, funded by changes to parking charges

Car parks owned by St Albans City and District Council are being revamped to make them more user friendly.

Details are included in a performance update report to St Albans City and District Council’s Cabinet at its meeting on Thursday 24 September.

Investment – off-street car parks

Twenty state-of-the-art pay machines are being installed at various Council fee paying car parks in the District. The improvements will increase the availability and reliability of parking machines and provide a better service for residents and visitors. In addition, contactless payment options will now be available in addition to the pay-by-phone technology recently rolled out.

The changes will include a pay-on-exit system at the two largest car parks serving St Albans City centre, Drovers Way and Russell Avenue.

These two adjoining multi-storey car parks – which hold 888 vehicles – will have new exit and entrance barriers as well as new pay machines.

The new software captures usage data to help manage the service, monitor performance and continue to improve it.  In addition, in the event of a fault, the real-time pay machine technology will send out immediate alerts to staff so issues can be rectified quickly. (more…)