TRADERS in North End are in line for a boost after plans to bring in more parking spaces for shoppers were approved.
Nine spaces will be created on the western side of London Road, between Laburnum Grove and Chichester Road.
We are introducing a number of initiatives to try to encourage people back to the area after listening to traders’ concerns.Tory councillor Linda Symes
Work is expected to start on Monday, March 21, and will take road contractor Colas 11 weeks to complete.
It includes road widening, footway resurfacing and new drains.
Residents and businesses will still be able to get along the road, but access could be ‘limited’ at times.
One lane will be closed and temporary signals in operation during the first phase of the project.
The lane closure will be between 9.30am until 3.30pm Monday to Friday.
But Jon Spencer, of Portsmouth Cycle Forum, has warned that introducing more parking will ‘only make things more dangerous’ for cyclists and pedestrians.
He said it will lead to ‘more cars reversing, pulling out and more doors opening in the path of cyclists’.
Mr Spencer added: ‘This might benefit traders, it might not. The trouble is, we don’t know.’
‘Cllr Linda Symes says we have the figures to show this will be of benefit, yet when I asked for that, she didn’t.
‘We’re talking about people’s lives being at stake.’
But Cllr Symes, who approved the plans in the absence of Tory traffic boss Ken Ellcome, said: ‘Removing parking spaces in North End impacted on people’s shopping habits. We’re introducing a number of initiatives to try to encourage people back to the area after listening to traders’ concerns.
‘We apologise for any disruption and inconvenience caused while the work is being carried out.’