A newly-formed West Didsbury action group is calling on Manchester City Council to abandon its plans for a residents’ car parking scheme in the area.
Save West Didsbury is warning that the proposed scheme would damage the success and vibrancy of the Burton Road area achieved in recent years and would have a long-term, adverse effect on residents, visitors and businesses. The group says that the council’s public consultation – launched only a week ago and due to end this Friday - has given insufficient time for local residents and businesses to voice their concerns.
A campaign website, Facebook page and Twitter presence is rallying the West Didsbury community to demonstrate the strength of opposition to the plans.
Council proposals are aimed at controlling visitor parking for people using West Didsbury’s shops and restaurants, hospital and places of worship. This would create residents-only parking on a host of side roads adjacent to Burton Road every day from 3pm to 9pm while visitors wanting to park on Burton Road and Cavendish Road from 9am to 6pm Monday to Saturday would need to pay and display.
The residents’ parking scheme would allow for only one free of charge vehicle permit per address, with extra permits costing £45 per year, per vehicle up to a maximum of three permits.
Kate Goodman of Save West Didsbury says: “The council’s proposals would bring a host of new problems to the Burton Road area rather than solving those that we already have and risks reversing the progress that West Didsbury has made in creating a vibrant community.
“While we empathise with the current parking situation for some residents, making parking more restrictive for people who live here and for visitors to the area wanting to shop, eat and enjoy the bar life will either deter people from coming at all or just shift the parking problems somewhere else.
“It also penalises people who travel here by car to work in local businesses because they are unable to reach the area by public transport and face difficulty getting home with a lack of public transport late in the evening.”
“Before any plans for a residents’ car parking scheme go ahead without proper consideration, we’d like the council to allow more time for the community to put forward its views and work together to find an alternative that addresses the problems while preserving the special character of West Didsbury that attracts people to live here in the first place.”
Save West Didsbury would welcome the opportunity to work with residents, businesses and local politicians to consider the potential solution to West Didsbury’s parking issues offered by the expansive car park facility owned and run by Withington Hospital on Nell Lane, but under used.
In the event that the council refuses to extend the public consultation period, West Didsbury residents need to complete and return the consultation questionnaire by Friday 15th April.