Parking fiasco

PUBLISHED: 12:52 13 November 2007 | UPDATED: 13:01 04 May 2010

Valerie and Christopher Bent who are facing a parking headache in Ely. Photo: HELEN DRAKE

Valerie and Christopher Bent who are facing a parking headache in Ely. Photo: HELEN DRAKE

ELY couple Valerie and Christopher Bent will be shunting their car around the city when a new parking regime comes into force. After 25 years living in their terraced home in Broad Street, they face losing their parking space to shoppers. Valerie and Chri

ELY couple Valerie and Christopher Bent will be shunting their car around the city when a new parking regime comes into force.

After 25 years living in their terraced home in Broad Street, they face losing their parking space to shoppers.

Valerie and Christopher have no parking outside their home and use the long-stay car park in Ship Lane.

But on December 10, it will be covered by early morning restrictions allowing vehicles to park for just 90 minutes between 8am and 10am with no return within two hours.

Valerie said: "I can't go out for the day without my car as every day I will have to make sure that I am available for most of the morning to keep moving the car from one place to another along with other residents affected by the new regulations.

"It does appear that the council has given no thought to the predicament of residents."

The pair put forward their concerns about the new parking restrictions during the public consultation earlier in the year and called for residents' parking permits for which they are prepared to pay.

Christopher said: "There are many period terraced houses in Ely without access to parking space at their property. There are frequent occasions when a related vehicle is not used daily but the new regulations will require that vehicle, to avoid penalties, to be moved, thus unnecessarily adding to congestion, pollution and waste with no net advantage to the parking situation."

East Cambridgeshire District Council officers have written to businesses in the city to see whether a special permit scheme for companies is required. But, as yet, nothing has been done to address residents' problems.

Cllr John Seaman said: "We appreciate the changes will not suit everyone and unfortunately some will be inconvenienced.

"Having listened to feedback, we are looking into whether a permit scheme for businesses would work under the new car parking regime but our current proposals do not include for a residents' scheme.

"It has not been possible to design a scheme that would be fair while the arrangements for all on-street parking regulations and enforcement remain outside our control.

"Also, there are many concerns that such a scheme may be unworkable given the mismatch of parking spaces and total demand. We have to strike a balance with our limited resources to meet the best interests of the city.

"The council will continue to monitor the changing patterns of parking when the new order comes into effect and feedback is particularly welcome to assist in evaluating the new regime.

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