Fringe Box



Letter: Onslow Parking Zones – Committee Design Has Produced An Ass

Published on: 10 Sep, 2014
Updated on: 10 Sep, 2014

resident permitn holders only signFrom Ross Connell

The extension of the Onslow village parking zone CPZ2 [Controlled Parking Zone 2] is now underway. But it differs from the existing CPZ2 (and CPZ1) in that it contains several parking spaces of unlimited time i.e. no restrictions so free parking with no risk of fines. Why?

I understand that this was a compromise by Guildford Borough Council (GBC) to pacify the vociferous minority opposed to the zone extension.  Those residents in the existing CPZ2 do not have the luxury of free parking spaces of unlimited time.

To have unlimited parking, those residents are obliged to buy parking permits at costs of £40 for the first car and £80 for a second car. Why are Onslow Village residents living in different parts of what is essentially the same parking zone (CPZ2) incurring different costs for parking?

Not surprisingly there are several implementation errors. In Wilderness road (that has time-free parking places) there is one time-restricted parking place close to and opposite a bus stop, nicely placed for hourly traffic hold-ups. In Ellis Avenue, a house with a recently built, second driveway the entrance was to have a time-restricted parking placed across it.

Wilderness Road before the new restrictions were put in place.

Wilderness Road before the new restrictions were put in place.

So what was the result? Two mini parking spaces, less than the length of a car, were designated for parking either side of the drive entrance. Maybe it’s for motorcycle parking? Outside the entrance to Budd’s in the row of local Onslow Village shops the presently designated parking spot partially obstructs the pavement and the shop entrance instead of being closer to the wall.

The upshot is that GBC’s parking zones come in various forms. CPZ1 has two hour parking limits, CPZ2 has four hour parking limits while the extended CPZ2 has four hour parking limits along with parking of unlimited duration.

While I can fully appreciate GBC’s efforts to seek to pacify opponents they have foolishly acquiesced by departing from their original plan. As one who resides in the existing CPZ2 I can vouch that it works extremely well. So why modify it?

I am minded of the old saying that a camel is a horse designed by a committee. In GBC’s case they have gone one better not by designing a camel but by giving us an ass.

One elects councillors to be effective leaders. In this case, instead of leading they have timorously followed. It’s yet another local consultation that took the better part of two years resulting in a nonsense.

As an after thought I checked the GBC website to see a map of the parking zones. But there was no map. In addition when I looked into other links on CPZs there is no mention of controlled zones containing unlimited-time parking spaces. So has GBC contravened its own guidelines? One wonders.

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