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PARKING SCHEME

4/11/09

THE PARKING SCHEME

 

I’m always amazed at the way that the English are reluctant to disagree with each other and I’ve noticed that if you express an opinion on a topic then you will often find that the person you are with will either agree or at least not overtly disagree.  It certainly seems that way with the parking scheme.  Since those who oppose it tend to go on about it more they tend to start the conversations- and people tend to agree with them.  However I’ve also noticed that if, when the subject comes up I praise the scheme, people tend to agree with me as well.

 Of course there are a lot of things that could be improved about cars in Lewes as anyone who lives or works in the Cliffe will tell you, but here are a number of improvements that the scheme has brought about:

  • The death or our shops through gridlock has been postponed.  Anyone who has stood near the junction of the High Street and Station Street for any length of time knows how close the town comes to traffic gridlock now.  Unless the growth of car use into the town is halted soon it will be so hard to move that no one will want to drive here. The scheme has reduced car use in the town.
  • More people are using the buses and trains.
  • It is now usually possible to park in the daytime in the High Street and streets like Friars Walk to visit the shops, when it rarely was before.
  • It is considerably safer for our children.  Forcing gaps between parked cars makes it much safer to cross the road, especially for small people who cannot see or be seen over vehicles.
  • You have far less chance of having your house burnt down.  In many roads, under the old scheme, parked cars meant that houses would have burnt to the ground before the fire engine could get anywhere near.
  • The first Xmas after the parking scheme was introduced trade went right up .  Only when the Chamber of Commerce and others started talking the scheme down did trade start to go down.
  • In much of the western part of the town and in other places you now have a much better chance of parking a car somewhere near your home in the day.
  • The presence of traffic wardens near schools at school drop off and pick up time has reduced the number of people driving their children to school.
  • If East Sussex county council stopped giving all its money to NCP and fools stopped damaging parking meters we would have a pot of money to spend on improvements to the town.

 

Next time the subject comes up, try raising one or more of these positive advantages- See if people agree with you!