Parking rules aim to make spaces by people’s Southsea homes

PLAN NOT PERFECT Cllr Hugh Mason
PLAN NOT PERFECT Cllr Hugh Mason
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A SCHEME to restrict parking in central Southsea has been given the green light.

Portsmouth City Council’s cabinet has rubber-stamped a decision to create a new parking zone north of Albert Road between Lawrence Road and Francis Avenue.

The plan will mean that only permit holders or visitors displaying a scratchcard will be able to park in the area between 5pm and 7pm.

The scheme is intended to make it easier for residents to find a parking space in the area when they get home from work and so reduce the overflow to surrounding areas.

Although a public consultation into the plans showed most residents wanted permits in force from 6pm to 8pm, the 5pm-7pm permit plan was agreed on instead so that fewer residents would end up parking in front of other houses in nearby streets.

Council deputy leader Cllr Hugh Mason said the solution was not perfect.

He said: ‘It’s not ideal, but it’s a compromise to try and get something that will work.’

Cllr Mason said he was more concerned about non-residents leaving their vehicles in the area for long periods.

At the meeting, Conservative Cllr Ken Ellcome questioned the legality of the scheme, saying that it was being introduced with a lack of proper consultation.

Cllr Ellcome said the restrictions would provide ‘some relief’ but would not solve the area’s parking problems.

He said: ‘From 7pm to 5pm the next day anyone can still park in those roads. That means that if you get home at 8pm you still won’t be able to park.’

Cllr Ellcome said the plan would not use the 300 empty spaces in the nearby MB Orchard Road scheme.

Kings Theatre trustee Mike Williams spoke at the meeting to say there had been a lack of consultation with businesses about the plan.

‘We understood the aim of the parking restrictions north and east of the Kings Theatre was to prevent roads being blocked by commuters to encourage the park-and-ride scheme.

‘This has been changed to an evening session by removing the commuters reasoning because they would have left the area. We are particularly concerned that there have been no consultation with business over these different proposals.’

The scheme is due to be introduced at the end of the month.