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Parking issues addressed

NORTHAMPTON Borough Council is set to consult on updated planning guidance for parking arrangements within new developments.

In recent decades there has been an attempt to encourage people to use more sustainable methods of transport by limiting the amount of available parking.

Experience has shown that this approach does not work without adequate alternative sustainable provision, and there is now an unprecedented level of car usage.

In some places this has resulted in inappropriate parking which can cause significant issues for communities across the town.

In response the Council has produced a supplementary planning document (SPD) which addresses some of the root causes

Cllr James Hill, Council Cabinet member for planning, said: “Accepted wisdom has for some time been that a limit on the amount of available parking would lead to a reduction in car use. This was clearly done with the best of intentions but has caused a variety of issues, particularly a profusion of inappropriate on-street parking.

“Cars can often be found blocking pavements, obstructing pedestrians, or clogging streets to the extent that they would prevent access for emergency services vehicles.

“For this reason we are proposing a different approach for new developments to ensure parking arrangements help to avoid these issues.

“We are also seeking to encourage adoption of more environmentally friendly options such as electric vehicles.”

The new SPD suggests changes to how parking is provided in relation to the associated development to help ensure vehicles are parked appropriately. It also proposes an increase in the amount of available space to accommodate larger vehicles.

There is an expectation that new schemes will provide charging points for electric vehicles and adequate bicycle storage.

Houses in multiple occupation (HMOs) will also now have more stringent stipulations including a requirement for each parking space to be individually accessible, to help avoid on-street issues.

The Cabinet agreed for the supplementary planning document to go to consultation.

This will run until 3 October, during which further details will be available on the Council’s ‘current consultations’ page at www.northampton.gov.uk/info/200024/consultations/892/consultation

A copy of the supplementary planning document can be found at www.northamptonboroughcouncil.com/councillors/documents/s59803/Draft%20Parking%20SPD%20V12.pdf

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