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Shortlands residents 'pushed out of their own roads' by commuter parking, survey reveals

PUBLISHED: 12:44 01 February 2017 | UPDATED: 12:44 01 February 2017

Commuter parking is clogging up roads in Shortlands

Commuter parking is clogging up roads in Shortlands

Archant

A residents' association has once again called on the council to take action

The council has been called upon to take action as commuter parking in Shortlands has left residents feeling ‘pushed out’ of their own roads.

Residents are calling for the introduction of controlled parking zones in problem areas and for a community-wide parking strategy to be implemented.

Shortlands Residents Association (SRA) received more than 430 responses to its survey from both members and non-members, with many locals saying family and friends could no longer park safely in their own roads.

With commuters taking advantage of free street parking to reduce travel costs, cleaning of roads and gutters is becoming ‘virtually impossible’, respondents said.

A co-ordinated scheme is needed to improve the situation, according to the SRA, because existing parking schemes have merely displaced problems to other areas.

Mark Dempsey, SRA Chair, said, “Many roads in Shortlands, especially near the Station, are packed with parked cars, causing delays and risks to road safety.

“The situation is getting worse, and the council must take action, possibly more CPZs and strategically placed yellow lines.

“We have just presented the outcome of our survey to local councillors and officers at Bromley Council and invited them to consider our findings and come back to us with firm proposals.

“In the end this is all about the quality of life of our community, and we would like to work alongside the Council to make things better.”

When the survey commenced, Colin Smith, executive councillor for environment, denied the council had been slow to take action and said measures had already been introduced to ameliorate the problems.

Councillor Colin Smith, executive councillor for environment said, “Whilst we have listened very carefully to the RA’s concerns and will consider any specific proposals that they bring forward with close interest, the simple fact of the matter remains that people have a reasonable expectation to park somewhere close to stations and that unless such schemes are very carefully sited, both P&D and Controlled Parking Zone (CPZ) schemes will displace traffic to the next most vulnerable location.

“Where this happens and residents seek assistance, the Council remains ever ready to intervene to provide solutions in those affected roads as well.

“That is why changes to the former are always reviewed several months after implementation to ensure their effectiveness and new Controlled Parking Schemes are restricted to neighbourhoods with little or no off street parking available to residents living there.

“It is also the case that parked cars act as natural ‘build outs’ and serve to reduce average traffic speeds which ironically has been another cause for expressed concern locally in recent months as well. In summary, it is a very delicate balancing act.

“The concerns regarding parked cars inhibiting the effectiveness of street sweeping is a fair and acknowledged one, something that we have it in mind to trial a pilot scheme on over coming months in a number of areas across the Borough, including Shortlands, as we discussed at last Wednesday’s meeting.”

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