Residents could be offered discount season tickets in council car parks to make up for not being able to park outside their homes while a full consultation is launched for a permit scheme.
Members of Boston Borough Council’s cabinet today approved two recommendations that aim to solve parking issues in the town centre.
The councillors agreed to a detailed consultation ‘as soon as possible’ to work out if residents want a permit parking scheme, how many houses and cars need to be covered by a scheme and how much it might cost.
Council officers will also consider a reduction in season ticket prices for the residents to be able to use council car parks until a final decision is made on residents’ parking.
The idea was floated for Boston town centre during a discussion on easing parking problems at a borough council scrutiny meeting last Wednesday.
A report to councillors at that meeting looked into a parking schemes covering different areas in the town, with costs ranging from £20,500 to £138,500 to set it up.
It was revealed any scheme must also be cost-neutral and Lincolnshire County Council would have to agree to it.
Coun Richard Leggott said a full consultation was needed, adding: “What we know about this, what I know about this is not what the residents know about their particular area, so unless we go forward and consult the local people we shall not be doing our job properly.
“I propose we start off saying to the cabinet, please start a full consultation exercise.”
It was also agreed to ask cabinet to consider giving discounts on season tickets for council car parks.
Coun Derek Richmond said the council would also be willing to consider this as a permanent solution.
Following the meeting, attended by more than 20 members of the public, campaigner Tim Atkinson, of Tunnard Street, said he was ‘delighted’ the council was addressing the issue.
However, he added it looked at the problems caused by shoppers and visitors, but didn’t seem to take into consideration specific issues on Thorold and Tawney Streets, which were more about not being able to leave their cars for more than two hours than not being able to park on the street.
A number of figures and costs were raised by the report and given as potential examples of what might be needed:
○ Issues were raised about whether there would be enough space, with several streets having more residents than parking spaces: Trinity Street for example had 20 residences but only 17 spaces, James Street 45 to 15 and Station Street 33 to 0.
○ Set up and running costs: A scheme could cost between £20-400,000 to set up depending on size and then £10-53,000 a year to run.
○ Costs for permits: an example medium-sized scheme, with 500 permits would cost £38,500 in capital and £17,940 in ongoing costs. These could be recovered by residents paying £112.88 for the first year and then £36 per year, £61.54 over three years and then £36 per year, or £51.28 for five years and then £36 per year.
*For details of the cabinet meeting, see next week’s Boston Standard