Council postpone parking charge rise

66% increase in meter charges was not approved by councillors
Plus details of new Acton Green and Southfield CPZs


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Hounslow Council have postponed a planned increase in meter and Pay and Display charges in part of Chiswick after a local resident spotted that the increase in one zone had not been approved by councillors.

Parking meters in the Central and East Chiswick 1 Zone were to be increased from 60p an hour to £1.00 and Pay and Display (P&D) charges were to rise from 80p an hour to £1.00. The maximum stay in both areas is two hours for meters and 4 hours for pay-and-display bays. The rationale for the increase was that it will standardise charges across the Chiswick area.

The parking meter change and Central Chiswick change were contained in the Hounslow Council's Parking Policies report, which Chiswick Area Committee had the opportunity to comment on last Spring. However, there is no mention in the report of any change in EC1 zone. As a result the increase is being deferred in that zone.

A council spokesperson said: “Due to an administrative error, the Parking Policies paper put to the Area Committee and the Executive only referred to the Central Chiswick scheme, without also including the East Chiswick 1 scheme. Unfortunately this was only picked up after the public notices – which referred to increases in both the Central Chiswick and East Chiswick 1 schemes – appeared in the local press."

The Council are now planning to introduce the increased charges in the Central Chiswick Zone but they will not be introducing the new parking charges in the East Chiswick 1 area until it has been taken to the Area Committee and been approved by the Executive.”

Opponents of the increase point to the fact that Hounslow has failed to introduce two hour visitor parking permits for residents. Visitors permits already cost twice as much in Brentford and Chiswick as they do in Hounslow. A spokesperson for Hounslow Council said that the issue of visitor's permits was covered in the Parking Policies Report and and is being progressed - visitor's permits in Chiswick currently work out at a rate of £1.00 for up to 5 hours, and in future will be 50p for up to 2½ hours.

At the same time the maximum parking time on many meters across the borough is being increased from one to two hours. The Chiswick Protection Group raised a formal objection to the plans a few years ago to reduce the maximum duration at parking meter bays from two hours to one. The letter was acknowledged by Hounslow Council but no subsequent response was received. Councillors objected to the earlier reduction in the allowed parking time and at a Chiswick Area Committee meeting members passed a resolution to restore meter maximum time to two hours. Two years afterwards these changes are now being implemented

The latest public notice announced an increase in the maximum stay from one to two hours in Belmont Road, Chiswick High Road, Clifton Gardens, Dukes Road, Heathfield Terrace, Kings Place and Linden Gardens in the Chiswick Inner core zone; Flanders Road and Priory Road in Bedford Park; Chiswick Common Road and Elliot Road in Mid Chiswick; Paxton Road and Sutherland Road in the Chiswick Mall area; and Airedale Avenue, British Grove, Ennismore Avenue, Homefield Road, Netheravon Road, Prebend Gardens, Ravensmede Way and Upham Park Road in East Chiswick.

London Borough of Ealing have also published Notices for new CPZ schemes proposed in 'Acton Green' and 'Southfield',

They have the following attributes:
The Acton Green one to have hours of 9.30 to 5.30 Mon-Fri; the Southfield one 9am to 6pm Mon-Fri
Motorcycles can park in any parking places without a permit or voucher.
Pay & Display sections are two hours maximum stay or five hours maximum stay at 60p per hour.
Free parking sections to be in some roads for one hour in Acton Green and 30 minutes in Southfield.
Business parking permits cost £250 per annum.
Resident parking permits cost £45 per annum.
Business visitors permits cost one pound per hour.
Resident visitor permits cost 40p for three hours and one pound for a whole day.
Borough wide visitors' service vouchers will be available to park in each zone for one pound per hour.

These schemes are likely to be implemented early this year though staff shortages at the Council have delayed their start.

January 22, 2004