Council seeks views on residential parking space quotas

Nuisance car parking in Crystal Way, Bradley Stoke

South Gloucestershire Council is asking local people for their views on parking arrangements for new housing developments.

The consultation has been started in response to complaints from residents and Councillors that the number of parking spaces provided for new homes and flat conversions is not always adequate.

The Council also says that some residents have complained that parking spaces allocated to houses/flats are not close enough to their properties.

The net result is that residents sometimes park in places that cause problems for bus and emergency vehicles, lead to neighbour disputes, block pavements and negatively impact the quality of life in an area.

On the other hand, parking spaces take up land, so to provide more might reduce the number of homes that can be built and lead to greater pressure to make more land available for development.

Government guidelines imposing a minimum parking provision of 1.5 spaces per dwelling were scrapped in 2006 and since then South Gloucestershire’s Local Plan has imposed maximum limits of one space per single bedroomed property,  1.5 spaces for a two bedroom property, two spaces for a three bedroom property and three spaces for larger properties.

More recently, the Coalition Government has dropped the requirement for local authorities to set maximum parking limits, allowing them instead to define their own parking ‘standards’.

In its consultation questionnaire, the Council also asks if residents feel that the parking spaces provided on a development should be ‘allocated’, i.e. clearly dedicated to a particular property or ‘unallocated’ (available for residents and visitors to share alike).

Within Bradley Stoke, although many properties incorporate an integral garage that counts as ‘allocated’ parking space, the garage space is often used for other purposes, e.g. storage. Planning applications to convert integral garages into living accommodation are generally approved providing that at least some off-street parking remains and the loss of parking space “would not create or exacerbate an existing congestion or safety issue”.

The consultation. which can be completed online or by post,  runs until Friday 2nd March 2012.

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  1. Houses definitely need more space. I live in a 3 bed house and we have 3 cars which means 1 of us has to park far down the road as there’s nowhere else. It is highly frustrating when a visitor parks in your space and doesn’t move their car for 3 days. We have had this on a regular basis since moving in. The times we have had to park down the bottom of the road and carry food shopping bags up the hill to our house because someone had parked in our spot is being a very very irritating factor. They need to give people 3 spaces for 3 bed houses. 1 space per room as many families on average now have 3 cars. It needs to be sorted! Also, allocated parking is an absolute must.

  2. I love the way the picture shows chaos in Crystal Way: I actually live in one of the first few houses in Crystal way, and on average there is one car parked in the road. So I don’t really think that picture is representative!

    The only time chaos arrives is when the school is in session or having “an event”…

  3. I live in quite a crowded street and I can’t help but feel things would be much better improved if they just went back to building houses with driveways! My street can become total chaos if everyone is in at the same time and residents frequently have to park on the main road as there isn’t enough space in the street for all the cars – if everyone had a driveway this would make things an awful lot easier. The allocated parking area in my street is behind some other houses and very rundown/overgrown and as such no one parks there as they don’t want to walk far with shopping bags etc when they can park closer in a visitors space outside their house – nor do we feel safe leaving our cars in an unlit area not visible from our houses. I contacted the council about the state of our parking area to be told it’s the residents problem – but when most houses are rented out no one cares! And counting a garage as a parking space is ridiculous seeing as you can barely get anything bigger than a smart car in them these days.

  4. Savages Woods Rd is a prime example. The on street parking outside DWH forces cars to squeeze pass each other. They definitely don’t have enough parking per household.

    I find the last page of these consultation pages a joke. How is my age group, sex, ethnic minority going to affect their decision ?

  5. It’s all about maximising the number of houses/flats to fit in the space to maximise the profits for the developers. I live in an area that was the very first to be built in Bradley Stoke in the late 80s. Here there are houses with large drives, wide roads and dedicated extra parking areas. I can fit 8 cars on my drive, 2 in the garage and a further 4 on the parking space opposite.

    Then you move onto the later developments where houses were built closer together with basically no dedicated parking. It’s simply planners without any fore-site and greedy developers that has caused Bradley Stoke to become one big car park.

  6. Isn’t it a little late to be considering parking spaces AFTER you’ve allowed developers to build on all the free space in Bradley Stoke? Call me old fashioned but I thought you did that before you built anything?

    The builders of the properties in Savages Wood Road were allowed to build without providing enough spaces. It was obvious that cars were then going to clog up the neighbouring roads. Mental.

    Many of the garages built in Bradley Stoke are not actually big enough to fit a normal sized car in.

    But lets not inconvenience the developers and hold them to any standards.

  7. Even when houses do have drive ways and garages, many people still do not use them. The road I live in has large 4 and 5 bed houses with large drive ways, but the road is often clogged with cars parked on the road side and the drive ways are empty! There are also alot of flats which are 2 beds but only have one space, many of these are rented properties with 2 or more cars, so they park in others spaces, on the pavements, even on the grass areas!

  8. The “turning circle” is always clogged with cars in our close because people are too lazy to use the allocated parking spaces a few paces away.

    I agree parking spaces should be clearly allocated with a minimum of 2.

  9. We moved in with small children in 1990 and now have adult children with their own cars so converted our grassed front garden so we have a full width hardstanding to take cars. We have three cars and can park two off road. Visitors can be a problem but can be accommodated. When the flats and houses started being built we said parking problems would follow. With bus services as bad as they are people need cars in bradley stoke.

  10. The mistakes of the past are with us forwever. The “older” property in the town was built at a time when car use was not frowned on, although communal parking areas were a bad idea which let certain areas of the town down. During the 90’s the government decided to increase the upper limit of density for developments and reduce the number of parking spaces allowed in these new developments. A double whammy. This has caused the congestion in the later developments.

    This consultation is about the large amount of new housing planned for South Gloucestershire and through it they will hopefully learn from the mistakes made in the later developments in Bradley Stoke.

  11. The problem that affects some of us on Juniper Way is that there is a small, twisty road called Marjoram Place that connects us to the main roads.

    This road often has cars selfishly parked on blind corners and thus you’re taking risks each time you take that route, hoping that a car isn’t coming in the other direction at the same time.

    We did try pressing the horn to let oncoming cars know we would be on the wrong side of the road, but one of the residents complained to the police that it was causing them stress, so we were ordered to stop.

    At the same time we were told it wasn’t a corner, it was a curve, and thus wasn’t subject to the rules of obstruction.


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