Seven new residents’ parking zones are set to be introduced in Bath next year following extensive public consultation.
The aim of the zones is to tackle anti-social driving and commuter parking in residential streets and improve people’s health and local environment as part of Bath and North East Somerset Council’s Liveable Neighbourhoods programme.
The zones also support wider council policies that aim to reduce vehicle emissions and congestion and ensure fair consideration and equitable street space is given to those that would prefer to walk, wheel, scoot or cycle short trips. This includes the council’s response to the climate and ecological emergencies in its Journey to Net Zero plan.
The new zones will be introduced next year in the following areas:
- St John’s Road, St Michael’s Road and Hungerford Road area
- Chelsea Road and Foxcombe Road area
- Sion Hill and Summerhill Road area
- Entry Hill area
- Lyme Gardens and Charmouth Road area
- Walcot, Snow Hill and Claremont Road area
- Oldfield Park and Westmoreland area
A proposed residents’ parking zone for the Beacon Hill area will not go ahead because of the high percentage of residents living in the zone who objected to the amended proposals during the formal TRO consultation.
Councillor Manda Rigby, cabinet member for Transport, said: “As part of making this decision we have listened to residents, many of whom find it challenging to park near their homes because of commuter parking. Currently, too many motorists use these areas to ‘park and stride’, circling often narrow, residential streets to find free parking before heading into the city for the day. This is not something we can encourage if we are serious about tackling congestion, air pollution and our climate emergency. Instead, we want to encourage people to use our local buses, the park and ride sites, or to walk, scoot or cycle short journeys.
“The seven zones, which were proposed by ward councillors on behalf of their communities, are part of the council’s wider Liveable Neighbourhoods programme. We have revised some of the zones with shopping streets to include more dual-use bays, ensuring a balance is struck between the needs of residents and local shops. Evidence shows that this type of controlled parking benefits local business by ensuring parking spaces are available for shoppers, and not blocked by vehicles parked for the whole day, often by commuters.
“You will start to see the zones going in from mid-January. Once they are up and running we will monitor their impact and would welcome feedback to help us address any minor issues. I recognise the zones may have an impact on other areas and I want to remind people that they can request their own RPZs, via ward councillors, if there is a significant and lasting displacement of vehicles into neighbouring areas as a result of the new zones.”
Preparations to install five of the seven smaller zones will start in the New Year. This excludes the larger Walcot, Snow Hill and Claremont Road area and the Oldfield Park and Westmoreland area that will be installed later in the year as their size and complexity is better suited to installation during the summer months.
Letters will be sent to residents at least one month before the estimated operational dates, including information on the zone, how to apply for permits, and a programme of work that could involve temporary road closures in order to paint the road markings and install signage.
The introduction of the zones follows extensive consultation. Residents were initially invited to share their views on the proposals during an informal public consultation in May 2022. There was further opportunity to comment on plans revised in the light of that feedback during a formal consultation in October 2022.
After considering the submissions made, the revised plans included reductions in the size of some of the proposed zones, improvements to signage and road marking proposals, installing more dual-use bays to support local businesses, and additional tailored amends to ensure the proposals work as well as possible for everyone in the community.
Under the new RPZ policy, the annual permit cost can vary depending on your vehicle’s emissions but, as a guide, a permit for an average eight-year-old 1.6L petrol or diesel family car would normally cost in the range of £100 to £125 per year. Permits for smaller, newer cars would typically be less. Residents can also purchase visitor permits regardless of whether they own a permit themselves.
To help manage the costs of permits, and to ensure that money is not wasted when permits are not required, permits can now be purchased in durations of 1, 3, 6 and 12 months.
The proposed RPZs and single yellow lines will operate between 8am to 6pm, 7 days a week, not including bank holidays. Double yellow and disabled parking bays operate at all times unless a sign indicates otherwise.
Permits are limited to two permits per property. Properties with one off-street parking space are limited to one permit, and properties with two off-street spaces are not eligible for permits.
Application for permits via MiPermit will open at least a month before each zone is due to start. More information on eligibility, the cost of permits (according to vehicle emissions) and how to apply is available at bathnes.gov.uk/RPZpermits
Residents seeking further information, or information in another format such as easy-read, Braille, or in another language, can email to [email protected] or call an advisor on 01225394025. Those unable to access the internet can visit BathnesLibraries and Information and Advice Services for support.