Understanding Chichester's parking consultation
Radical meaures to re-allocate parking in Chichester city centre have been outlined by West Sussex County Council, but how would the changes affect you?
A consultation is running until October 31 on ideas to reduce traffic and re-arrange parking from car parks onto various streets in the roads space audit.
Here some of the core ideas explained. All of them are as yet suggestions only:
Put long-stay parking for commuters into residential streets
Many residential streets have been identified as having ‘surplus capacity at all times’ (full list below).
This would affect anyone living in a residential parking scheme (RPS) area in the city centre, including Oving Road, Duncan Road and roads around St Richard’s Hospital.
The idea is that long-stay commuters would take up spare space in city centre residential streets during the day to allow for a car park re-shuffle.
Some long-stay car parks arond the city’s gateways (Avenue de Chartres, Northgate and Cattle Market) would become short-stay, while some short-stay car parks in the city centre would close.
A report claims the changes ‘could remove around 2,000 vehicle trips per day in and out of the city’.
Commuters make around one trip in and out of the city per day, as shown by the low turnover in long-stay car parks.
Short-stay visitors would then be managed around the core of the city into what the report says are comparatively underused car parks further out, forming multiple trips per parking space, but around the city centre instead of through it.
Around 700 potential daytime residential spaces have been identified within RPS residential streets.
It is argued new permits would help existing parking issues: “most streets have capacity overall to accommodate visitors and commuters, but without restrictions or control, the visitors and commuters occupy all available space in a concentrated section of the street making it problematic for residents that happen to live in that section.”
The report does note potential issues with residents wishing to park after returning from work with commuters still in their road.
A series of time restrictions limiting certain roads to use between 9.30am to 3pm or 4pm has been suggested as a mitigating measure: “it may be appropriate for some (but not all) of the commuter and visitor parking bays to be available only up to 3pm to avoid creating problems with the late afternoon peak.
“Other spots would and could be available at all times from early morning until the late evening.
“Outside the time allocated for visitor parking, the spots would be available for those with a residents’ parking permit for that zone.”
The residential streets involved in the parking study would be priced for long-stay permits in line with demand.
Stop ‘middle distance’ journeys through Chichester
In other words, traffic would largely be made to exit the city the way it came in.
Driving across the city would be discouraged or prevented and instead pushed onto the A27 bypass.
It’s assumed the A27 will have some form of improvement within the next five years, be that junction improvements from the county council or Highways England funding a scheme.
The report states: “What the final (A27) scheme is, its location and scale are largely immaterial to the approach presented.
“We see that the key thing is for the city to push unwanted traffic movements onto the A27.”
Measures could include creating a ‘bus gate’ at Southgate to ‘sever’ a through route.
Reducing inner city road capacity, to create more parking
Road space inside the city would also be reduced to encourage the use of public transport and walking.
The report suggests that, without these kinds of measures, any extra capacity on the A27 could just result in more traffic overall.
Avenue de Chartes, Via Ravenna, Westergate and the Hornet could lose a lane or extra road space.
In the case of Avenue de Chartres, one traffic lane might be converted into ‘a slow lane with on-street parking bays, improved cycle provision and safe crossing points (short term delivery timescale with low indicative cost of up to £250K)’.
The Hornet could also lose a lane to gain a wider footpath at an estimated cost of £1million.
“Relocating the parking supply affords opportunities to improve the walk, cycle and bus network, by reallocating the space occupied by parking, and more significantly the space occupied by traffic on route towards that parking.”
Contingency plans: Park and Ride
If overall parking capacity still isn’t enough within the city, park and ride would be considered as an alternative:
“The contingency solution should not be seen specifically as park and ride but rather a plan to support a distributed parking solution (of which park and ride would be an option if a bus was provided as the onward mode from the parking area to the city).”
The full report and consultation survey are available online at
https://haveyoursay.westsussex.gov.uk/highways-and-transport/chichester-rsa/West Sussex County Council expects to publish its consultation results by January 12.
The full list of residential streets surveyed:
Fishbourne Road East
St James Road