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Parking Review is a “Step in the Right Direction” says Wiltshire Lib Dems

March 17, 2015 11:09 PM

Today Wiltshire Council's Cabinet approved the adoption of a new Parking Strategy for the County which will see the scrapping of the unpopular banding of carparks across the county and the introduction of bespoke pricing based on individual community needs.

Wiltshire Lib Dems have welcomed the u-turn in the council's approach to parking charges, with the Group Leader Jon Hubbard commenting, "For the past four years I have been saying that it was wrong to have introduced the 'one-size-fits-all approach' that the Conservatives forced on Wiltshire and I am pleased that they have finally accepted they were wrong.

"We now need to see further information about how it will be possible for local communities to take ownership of carparks and have the opportunity to bring back the one hour free parking that I, local residents and Chippenham MP Duncan Hames have been campaigning for. In this respect the report is lacking in detail, although we do see that the costs of doing this across the county are less than we have been told in the past".

"This report provides an excellent opportunity for local groups to be more involved in the management of their local parking and though there are some individual price discrepancies to be looked at this report gives the people of Wiltshire the opportunity to manage the parking they want".

These new proposals which should come into force by November will see a significant change in Wiltshire's parking strategy with far greater focus on the implementation of new technology including phone and cashless payment systems to allow greater options for parking payments and provide savings opportunities for the Council. Liberal Democrats have long campaigned for smarter cashless payment solutions in the county with the group bringing a 'One Card for Wiltshire' proposal to a meeting of the full council last year.

Chippenham Councillor Mark Packard who chaired the Scrutiny Task Group that examined the proposals welcomed the report saying "This report has been many months in the making and is a step in the right direct to modernising our parking systems in Wiltshire. We need modern solutions to our parking problems and I hope that we will continue to improve the system and introduce the cheaper more efficient cashless payment systems outlined in our 'One Card for Wiltshire' proposals".