New Parking Strategy approved for Central Bedfordshire Image by chechotkin AdobeStock_167132062

Council’s Executive approves revised parking strategy

Central Bedfordshire Council’s Executive approved the decision to adopt a revised parking strategy during its meeting on Tuesday (20 August 2019).

Parking is a real issue for lots of residents, everyone wants accessible parking as most people use or have access to a car. However, space is often limited, and inconsiderate parking can cause road safety concerns.

The strategy aims to manage parking in Central Bedfordshire by supporting local businesses and allowing town centres to thrive, whilst also encouraging the use of sustainable transport options.

To focus on how it can best support the management of parking, the council has set out nine key objectives:

  1. Make Central Bedfordshire and its town centres as accessible to residents, businesses and visitors as
    possible to ensure growth and prosperity
  2. Ensure that parking schemes for residents, businesses and visitors are well managed
  3. Promote the safety of all road users
  4. Ensure that there is sufficient and appropriate parking for new developments
  5. Fulfil our statutory requirements for the parking we provide
  6. Help ensure that our roads are well managed
  7. Provide alternative travel choices that are sustainable
  8. Provide effective enforcement or parking restrictions
  9. Work in partnership with other parking providers (such as railway stations, retail parks etc.) so we can
    provide the best service possible

On the ground the strategy will involve looking at new and alternative ways of working. This includes investigating new technology options and the possibility of employing rapid response officers.

Councillor Nigel Young, executive member for Highways Delivery and Innovation at the council, said:

“Parking can impact on traffic flow, influence travel behaviour and affect the environment in which we live and work. In order to manage parking in Central Bedfordshire for the benefit of everyone we have developed this parking strategy.

“This gives us a framework and a suite of tools to address parking issues and lays out the parameters for preparing local strategies.

“It has been written to provide residents, visitors, shoppers and local businesses with information about our approach to managing parking and will look to influence travel behaviour by encouraging residents to use sustainable transport options.”

Verge and footway parking enforcement

The council will also introduce verge and footway parking enforcement, to tackle inconsiderate parking as this can cause road safety issues and obstruct emergency access.

The strategy will cover the next three years, when it will be superseded by a forthcoming wider review of local transport as part of a new local transport plan. Councillor Young said:

“We employ a small team of people to manage parking across the whole council area, meaning that prioritisation for their work is essential.

“This strategy aims to identify the areas in which we will focus and offers clarity around how we make decisions around parking and enforcement.”

Residents in Central Beds who are experiencing parking issues should approach their ward councillor in the first instance.