Monday, July 26, 2010

Football Parking - Update

Thanks so much for the feedback you’ve sent on the proposed extension of parking restrictions to Saturdays.

Jane and I spoke at some length over the weekend to the Cabinet member for transport, Michael Filer. Having given your feedback he has agreed to instruct officers NOT to introduce restrictions until there has been a proper consultation with ward councillors and residents. A consultation that we will lead on.

Having sent the email, Lawrence also called on a number of people in the affected roads to ask their opinion too. We gathered 80 responses which split 72 : 8 in favour of no extension of the restrictions. The 8 people who were in favour were grouped together where the match day parking is at its worst and I’ll therefore be talking to the police and the council today to see what we can do to help those residents in the short term while we sort out a better response.

Naturally enough, your responses included a number of other useful suggestions and enquiries. Forgive me for not responding to everyone individually but answering them as best I can here.

Area of Restriction Extension

The proposal for this was that the restrictions should be extended in the roads of Littledown Avenue and the upper end of Harewood Avenue and ‘New Littledown’ – the roads leading off Harewood Crescent. It would not have extended down Harewood Avenue beyond Avonbourne and Portchester schools. Sorry, I should have made this clear in the first email.

Parking Permits

Jane has led on this for us and has obtained a pilot scheme in one of our local roads with a particular problem. The officers have had to be brought kicking and screaming to the table to do it, but the consultation has begun and we have committed £1,000 from our ward fund to ensure the pilot goes ahead. The change of leadership in the council has frankly not helped us, as the Cabinet member in charge has changed, but Jane’s tenacity should still pay off. Beyond that we see no reason why a wider consultation for everyone should not be brought forward and we’re still fighting for this.

King’s Park developments, Holdenhurst Road and the proposed Slip Road.

Proposals for the construction of the on slip at King’s Park have so far escaped the proposed cuts once again. The outline planning application for an ice rink in King’s Park has just been published. We’ll be letting you have more details of this over the next couple of weeks and will be pressing for any approval for construction to be subject to the construction of the on slip. In the meantime, the works on Holdenhurst Road are nearly completed and should help in the short term as the traffic lights introduced at the Fire Station junction and at the junction of Ashley Road will be intelligently linked to allow extended flow of traffic from the busiest direction.

Thank you again for helping us with your feedback. The ability to respond with so much support so quickly has ensure we have the outcome we should have had all along – a respite while we have a chance to contact everyone and work for a solution that’s suitable to everyone or at least as many people as possible.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

AFC Bournemouth Parking - Urgent Feedback required

You may know that for some time the Police have wanted to stop putting out bollards to prohibit parking on AFC Bournemouth match days. Jane and I have been successful in keeping the arrangement going, however I am afraid they have now decided definitely to stop providing the service. This is partially as a result of changes in the law about the police managing traffic, but more importantly because their budget pressures mean they can’t afford the manpower. (You may reasonably ask why AFC Bournemouth can’t pick up the tab, I agree, and am pursing this issue through the Police Authority.)

The police and council officers met earlier this year without Jane or my knowledge and agreed that the best course of action was to extend the current yellow line parking restrictions from weekdays only to Saturdays as well, every Saturday - regardless of whether there is a match on at AFC Bournemouth.

We were informed at the end of last week and our initial reaction to this is that it is completely unacceptable. To further prohibit your ability to park on the street at a weekend would we believe be very unpopular. That is certainly the reaction from the local people I have spoken to so far.

The down side of course is that there will be no restriction to on street parking on match days, which will cause some problems. The police and council are adamant that extension of the yellow lines is the only solution. I don’t believe this can be the case and am pursuing other ideas.

In the meantime, you will be receiving a letter from the council in the next day or so informing you that the restrictions will be coming in to place from August 9th.

Jane and I would very much appreciate it if you could let us know what you think. Are we right in assuming that the inconvenience of match day parking will be less than the inconvenience of parking restrictions applying every Saturday?

We intend to survey as widely as we can in the area about the issue. If it’s possible for you to tell your friends and neighbours who don’t receive our email updates and ask them to let us know too that would be brilliant. I am hoping that with a sufficiently wide response we can ensure that no changes are brought in before a proper consultation with local residents and councillors about ALL the possible options is carried out