Getting car parking right is a difficult balance

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We have much sympathy for those motorists in our city who will read The News today and despair at the council’s decision to suspend two major parking zones.

We live in a densely populated city, with narrow streets and finite parking spaces, that much is well known.

And there is nothing worse than finishing work for the day, only to find you must circle around the block in what feels like an endless loop while you wait for a space to free up.

To an extent, it’s a part of life one must accept when living in one of the country’s most densely populated cities — never mind the fact we’re all crammed onto an island.

But any schemes which could help alleviate the strain of inner-city parking should be explored and considered on their merits.

For those who live in certain parts of Portsmouth, residents’ parking zones must have been a blessing, deterring those who do not live nearby from outstaying their welcome.

But it is obvious the system has its flaws.

People who are displaced by the parking zones end up parking a few roads down in streets where there are no restrictions, passing on the misery to neighbours somewhere else.

It seems this system can only work if it is applicable to every street in the city, and not just certain elements.

It is of course going to be difficult to find a plan which is beneficial to everybody, and we welcome anything that can be tried to improve the system.

But the impact these changes have on residents must not be overlooked.

The decision has been made to suspend the parking zones, so now the effects of this move must be measured carefully.

If problems return, those living here must make the consequences known through proper channels to the council, and those in authority must listen.

Because in our packed city, it’s vital we all learn to get along — both on and off the streets.


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