Parking Charges increases in Wandsworth & how income will be spent

Source: Paper 19-33. Being considered by Transport OSC, 12 Feb. 2019.

Comments from Wandsworth Living Streets:

This Paper (19-33) is a series of missed opportunities. 

  1. It does nothing to reduce the damage caused by motor vehicles to Air Quality and so contribute to realising the Council’s own Air Quality Strategy goals.
  2. Nothing to discourage car ownership in accordance with this goal having been set by the London Transport Strategy.
  3. Nothing to raise additional funds to build pedestrian and cycle-friendly infrastructure, and meet road maintenance expenditure.This despite the Council being allowed to spend surplus parking revenue on, in the words of the Officer’s Paper ‘meeting the cost of anything which facilitates the London Transport Strategy’.

 

PARKING CHARGES

Parking Charges                                             Current charge    Charge from 2019-20

Resident’s Parking  (if got on-line):               £146                         £161

Electric Vehicle Parking (if got on-line):      £92                            £101                                        (There are only about 400 EVs in borough at present.)

Motor-cycles                                                     Apparently no charge  at all.

Analysis:

  • The Resident’s Parking Charge increase is about twice the rate of inflation: Parking charges were not increased last year (2018) at all. The increase now is about 10% over 2 years ago. The opportunity is being missed to help meet Mayoral Transport Strategy goal of nudging more Londoners to give up owning (& driving) private cars in London.

 

  • Charges for on-street parking of a resident’s 2nd, 3rd vehicles: The charge is only £35 more than for the resident’s first car. This does not help reduce the number of cars likely to be parked on our own borough’s streets

 

  • No higher Parking Permit charges for dirty diesel or petrol vehicles being introduced, as some London boroughs have done: Wandsworth Council is therefore not helping its residents to adjust to the upcoming extension to parts of our Borough in April 2021 of the Mayor’s ULEZ scheme to improve Air Quality (the extension will embrace those parts of our borough lying within the South Circular). It also means the Council is not nudging residents to do their bit to meet Wandsworth’s own Air Quality improvement goals.

 

  • Car club parking permit charge is rising by only 3%: This is good news. Car clubs in Wandsworth now have 15,000 members.

 

  • No charge on households which have a dropped curb across the pavement in order to accommodate parking their vehicle in their front garden: This despite the fact that a dropped curb means the Council cannot install a CPZ parking place there and earn revenue therefrom to use to help meet its road maintenance & other transport expenses.

 

Car Ownership in Wandsworth:

  • Car ownership: is 83,018 (as of 2015-16).

 

  • Goal for reducing car ownership in Wandsworth: The Council aims at having only about 73,800 by 2041 (the target date for the current Mayoral Transport Strategy).

 Analysis:

  • That is means a goal of reducing the number of cars owned in the borough by 9,218 by 2041. This is only an 11% fall over 25 years – or an average of 341 fewer cars (less than half a per cent of the total number) in our borough each year.  What is more, since 2012-13 there seems to have been almost no drop in vehicle ownership in the borough.

 

  • The important thing to realize is that, if Wandsworth Council is to have any success in implementing the London Transport Strategy, its own Cycling Strategy, and its own Active Wandsworth strategy, it needs to use all levers at its disposal to a) reduce car dependence and b) enable active travel and public transport.

 

How the Council intends to spend it net Parking Income:

Once the costs of the parking service (attendants, machinery etc) are covered, the Council earned a surplus of £23.8 millionin 2017-18.

It will spend:

  • Freedom pass & other concessionary fares: £13.9 million
  • Special Needs & Educational Transport: £2.9  million
  • Highway Maintenance & Improvement £6.8  million

 The Council has to spend its surplus parking revenue on Transport goals. These goals include:

  • “Environmental improvements”
  • “Meeting the cost of anything which facilitates the London Transport Strategy”(Quotes from the Officers’ Paper)

 

Prepared by Robert Molteno, Secretary, Wandsworth Living Streets, 11 Feb. 2019

EMAIL:Robert.Molteno@gmail.com