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Plans for resident only parking restrictions on Ryde’s roads could push more parked cars onto surrounding streets, the town’s Planning Committee meeting heard recently.

Independent member for Ryde North West, Councillor Phil Jordan, has warned of a potential ‘nightmare scenario’ with visitors and residents alike struggling to find anywhere to park.

A recent report said that most respondents to a resident parking zone survey thought permits should be free, but if approved they could cost £60 for the first permit, and £100 for the second car.

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The Isle of Wight Council are inviting the public and businesses to express views on the proposal to extend on-street parking charges in the town.

But Cllr Jordan added:

“The Island needs a proper parking strategy that is tailored to different areas. A one size fits all scheme just won’t work.”

Vehicle registrations on the Island are said to be around 64,000 (140,000 population) and that number is growing. Forecasts put it at around 70,000 vehicle registrations by 2025. That does not include huge visitor vehicle numbers, mainly during the summer.

Cllr Jordan adds:

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“The current resident parking strategy is a complete kneejerk reaction. It is brought on by a small number of councillors who, in turn, were responding to angry residents about the growing parking problems in their areas.”

Cllr Jordan said he thought that a new overall strategy might look at on and off road parking, and could increase off road parking availability, perhaps by low level multi-storey car parks in some places (Newport, Cowes and Ryde could be contenders). Schemes could also include lower off road parking charges and park and ride schemes…

“The current scheme is ad hoc. Many residents still do not fully grasp the requirements and the costs and limitations of a Residents Parking Zone in their street, but the policy allows, at least, for them to apply.

“However, with no overall parking strategy in place we are facing the reality of reducing on-street parking spaces by an unknown number (as yet) but no plan as to where those displaced vehicles might park.”

The cost of St Thomas long stay car park in Ryde, for example, has risen significantly – Island residents parking permits went from £50 per year in 2012 to a massive £435 a year now. And that has resulted in extra vehicles parking around the Front, Esplanade, Dover Street, Spencer road and other streets around Ryde.

Conservative member for Ryde North East Cllr Wayne Whittle thought the Isle of Wight Council’s planning strategy seemed to work. He explained that under the current consultation up to 51% of residents in a street must agree to have Parking Permit status.

He added that he is representing a group of residents who do want a permit zone:

“The residents came to me two years ago and asked for help in getting the zone. One of their problems is commuters taking up all the spaces. The residents did their own survey and discovered there was a need.

“More than 80% responded positively to a Resident permit Parking and limited time waiting zone leaving the remainder of respondents either against or without comment.

“At the end of the day we want a reasonably priced parking permit and somewhere to park.”

The Town Council will submit views to the Isle of Wight Council once the proposals are made clear. You can submit comments to the Town Council via email to [email protected] via comment on the Facebook post, by tweeting @RydeTownCouncil, or by writing to Ryde Town Council, 10 Lind Street, Ryde, PO33 2NQ.

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