Wanstead parking consultation: Pay & display gets green light with smaller permits area

The results of the Wanstead parking consultation are finally out. Picture: Steve Poston

The results of the Wanstead parking consultation are finally out. Picture: Steve Poston - Credit: Archant

Redbridge Council has revealed the results of the Wanstead parking consultation, and proposes pay & display parking in the High Street and a smaller residents’ permit area.

The roads which will get a residents' permit system under Redbridge Council's proposals. Picture: Re

The roads which will get a residents' permit system under Redbridge Council's proposals. Picture: Redbridge Council - Credit: Archant

Questionnaires were delivered to 4,200 addresses in March, after a strong campaign forced the local authority into a full consultation.

In total 1,773 people responded, with 820 returned from inside the area affected.

Almost half stated that pay & display controls would make it easier to park, while 24 per cent disagreed. A further 33pc didn’t have an opinion.

The Labour administration is proposing a pay & display scheme from Monday to Saturday, with 30 minutes free parking in line with the rest of Redbridge.

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It is also planning to introduce residents’ permits in 18 surrounding roads – the majority of which supported parking controls.

The document states that “Ellesmere Close, Elm Close, Hollybush Close, Wellesley Road and Wellington Road (including Wellington Passage)” will also be included “to protect these roads from any immediate parking displacement”.

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The respondents in those roads were evenly divided over the permit system.

This is significantly reduced from the original controversial plans released in November last year.

The Warren Estate, Nightingale Lane, Grosvenor Road, Grove Park and the Counties Estate have all been removed.

Councillor John Howard, cabinet member for environment and sustainability, said: “We’ve listened carefully to what residents have told us, and our proposals for changes to parking are necessary to ensure that Wanstead remains a vibrant commercial and residential area with local shops and businesses at its core.

“It’s a difficult balancing act to make sure that the needs of motorists, residents and local businesses are met, and I know we will never please everyone but I believe that our new proposals are what is best for the whole area.”

The path to this point has been a rocky one.

When first announced, the wide ranging permit scheme and pay & display controls were met with uproar by residents.

Introduced as an experimental traffic order, this meant the council didn’t have to hold a full consultation.

A petition calling for such a consultation was signed by more than 3,500 people, and several acrimonious public meetings were held across the area.

Residents claimed this was not an issue on their streets, and businesses stated it would affect their trade.

Now the council can point to hard data behind its decisions.

A previous parking occupancy survey in 2016 found that in the High Street less than half of the users were short stay, and 90pc stayed after the one hour restriction had finished.

A third of parking was long stay, and on Saturdays more than two thirds stayed for over six hours.

The same survey found that two thirds of residential streets in the area were over parked, and a third of cars did not belong to residents and stayed for more than six hours.

Councillor Paul Merry (Lab, Wanstead) said: “Due to the increasing pressures on parking in and around the High Street, I believe the new parking offer will improve footfall and paying consumers to Wanstead High Street by encouraging less long term commuter parking.”

The scheme will be passed through a permanent Traffic Management Order, which has a 21 day period when objections can be made.

A council spokeswoman said: “We intend to implement the resident permit and the pay and display scheme in January 2018.”

For more details click here.

More to follow.

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