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Car parking fee? You must be effing joking

Sleuth wonders whether motorist at City Gate is a freedom fighter, an artist or just hates people in wheelchairs

Published on August 10th 2009.

Car parking fee? You must be effing joking

Down at City Gate Apartments, off Chester Road, one driver, this weekend, discovered a special way of parking. For ingenuity he (it’s got to be a man hasn’t it?) should get an award. Or maybe a fine - for bending the rules more than a kids’ entertainer twists balloons.

His deflection of pedestrians round the front of the car as he fills half the pavement is particularly satisfying. Perhaps he thinks he’s a parking terrorist. Or maybe he just hates people in wheelchairs or with prams.

In a tiny space for one, a Volkswagen Passat (Sleuth’s prepared to be corrected by a car-spotter) has hunkered up with a pretty babe of a silver car.

Sleuth doesn’t know if City Gate is good for loving but this is snug. A tiny parking bay for one, turned into a love nest for two.

Or maybe the driver is an artist, and this is an Arts Council funded project, dropping art where people don’t expect. An artwork designed to show our over-reliance on the internal combustion engine; or a comment on ‘Green Issues’ – half Arts Council funded sculpture is about the latter these days.

Or maybe the driver’s been listening to Jeremy Clarkson’s rants about the difficulty of city parking, and thinks he’s a freedom fighter. His deflection of pedestrians round the front of the car as he fills half the pavement is particularly satisfying. Perhaps he thinks he’s a parking terrorist. Or maybe he just hates people in wheelchairs or with prams.

Then again maybe he’s just a selfish bugger who thinks he can park anywhere.

Sleuth knows one thing.

Confidential has been campaigning long for a relaxation in city centre parking. We’ve always thought for instance, that free Saturday street parking is a must. We should encourage drivers away from, say, the Trafford Centre, and into town where they contribute to retail, tourism and keeping the city busy and attractive. The present over-priced parking regime is hurting Manchester city centre.

Sleuth isn’t sure this is the way to achieve this. Mr Passat in these pictures is pushing it a bit. Still while Sleuth doesn’t encourage such behaviour, he does thank the man in the Passat for providing a talking point and photo opportunity.

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16 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

HrrrmAugust 10th 2009.

Slow day was it?

citygateAugust 10th 2009.

I think there more people that email the council about the parking they will start and do somthing about it , so to help blantyre street please can you all email the council about the parkingcontact@manchester.gov.ukp.richardson1@manchester.gov.ukcheers

GGAugust 10th 2009.

Just read this article and am glad it's not just me that that this has infuriated. I'm by no means a NIMBY, but some people are just taking the p*ss.To clarify, it was actually the Audi that first performed this parking manoeuvre. I should know as I live directly above the space and he turned up about midnight one night and caused an almighty racket while mounting the kerb. The problem was that both the cars either side had not moved in weeks, enabling this idiot (and subsequent moronic copycats) to park in this manner. I've seen at least 4 cars park in this way and I'm sorry to say that all the drivers have been male. I did try to have a quiet word with one individual, but he presumed I was joking and walked off?! Even had a word with a traffic warden to enquire as to why no punishment and their answer was that they could only enforce drivers who contravened "yellow-line" regulations, and this would have to be dealt with by the council/police. Helpful indeed.Mind you, the bonnets of the idiot's cars do make a good ashtray.

Big RonAugust 10th 2009.

Let me guess? They double-teamed you, and then never called?

BAE BillAugust 10th 2009.

I'd put money on that being a woman's car, not a mans.

City Gate Busy BodyAugust 10th 2009.

Wouldn't be so bad but he isn't the only one that parks like this. There's an Audi A6 S181 ASX that has followed suit!........

anonAugust 10th 2009.

I know 2 V stupid and selfish people (men) that live in Citygate...I would put money on it being one of them...!

tickety booAugust 10th 2009.

the driver is purely and simply one of those selfish c**nts who we have to suffer. If you see such behavior call parking wardens on 01612344145 and ask someone to attend to it.

JamesAugust 10th 2009.

The story shows the folly of the city centre car parking charges...

ELAugust 10th 2009.

The fact still remains that this is one of Sleuth's poorest efforts yet.

LouAugust 10th 2009.

I bet I could do that in my Dawoo Matiz and still be within the lines.Its all in the type of car...Of course the down size is you have to drive a matiz, but you can't win them all.

AnonymousAugust 10th 2009.

Looks like a Vauxhall Insignia to me

AnonymousAugust 10th 2009.

Background to the situation:-The council instructed Bellway when they built these flats to restrict the parking to 60% of the flats to encourage people to sell their car and use public transport. However they didn’t realize that most people work out of the city centre and so need their car to get to work. Others need their car to visit clients. -Bellway were charging £25k for a parking space with the flats, a charge which when added to a mortgage simply could not be afforded by most, which I’m sure they way things are at the moment and the downward spiral in the value of the flats, most are glad about as they would be in serious negative equity now-Bellway have fairly recently stopped people from parking in the top car park inside the gates in between city gates 1 and 2 and many of these now lie empty. People could previously buy a fob and park here, easing congestion on the road-Since the buildings have filled up the council have created more of a problem by restricting parking even further in the following ways:oThey have placed huge plant pots on the small car park near the entrance to Blantyre StreetoThey brought out the pavement on the bend outside city gate 2, which is the main source of the problem as to why large vehicles and emergency vehicles have trouble getting down Blantyre street aoThey have painted either single or double yellow lines everywhere, meaning there are even less places for residents to park. -The situation is made worse by non-residents parking there – either during the week for work or at weekends to go shopping to avoid city centre parking chargesAs for people complaining about having to walk around cars on the pavement, I don’t think this is a valid argument for imposing more parking restrictions as there is a pavement on the other side they can use, I think the major problem is the fact that emergency vehicles cannot get past cars parked on Blantyre Street but this situation is the councils fault:-For bringing out the pavement on the corner and turning the road into a tight bend-By restricting parking for residents to try and encourage them to sell their cars, not realizing that people actually need them for workI think the council need to sort this problem and create more parking for residents. It is no good people saying people shouldn’t have bought flats in the city centre and then expect there to be parking, the fact is people live here and need their cars whether for work or at weekends so we need more parking, something which should have been considered before people moved in. I propose a number of solutions:-Cut into the pavement on the one side where there are bays at present and create diagonal spaces (as on St John Street opposite Great Northern). This would double the amount of spaces available. The other side of the road can then have double yellow lines to prevent people parking there and thus allowing emergency vehicles to pass (but this should only be done once a lot more parking space has been made available for residents otherwise they will have nowhere to park overnight)-The bays should be extended right up to the gates of city gate 2 where there is currently a lot of pavement space-All residents should be given free parking permits (1 x for 1 bedroom and 2 x for 2 bedroom flats) to stop non-residents from parking there-The council should open up Jackson’s Wharf car park to create more space-Bays should be created down one side of the road that leads down to Jackson’s Wharf as it is on Blantyre Street. It currently has single yellow lines all the way down on both sides -The bit of land near the entrance to City Gate (which now has plant pots on it) should be turned into proper parking spaces-The Pavement that was brought out on the corner outside the gates of City Gate 2 should be reverted to how they were previously to allow emergency vehicles to pass-The Council should try and negotiate with the man who owns Worlsley Mill to either a). buy this land from him to be used by residents b). charge a small fee for people wanting to park there c). allow people to park there for a maximum of 2 hours, creating some visitor spaces as well-Bellway need to open up the top car park again, allowing people with a fob to park there, making use of these spaces and so taking more cars off the road-Making more use of the many free spaces underground. The only way this would work would be by charging a fee but it would need to be affordable.

PedantAugust 10th 2009.

* Internal Combustion engine EDITORIAL: Thanks, yes those spontaneous ones are lethal.

CasAugust 10th 2009.

No it doesn't James. This story shows that one person parks like a tosser.He would still have parked like a tosser if it were free, as it seems the lack of a space, not the price of one that gave him the excuse, in his own little head, to do it.Should parking be free they'll be less available spaces and so more 'creative' parking.

Barry StirAugust 10th 2009.

erm..just because you park half the car on the payment doesn't mean the half parked on the road is free - the traffic wardens arent that generous!If all cars parked like this we could double the number of spaces in the city centre overnight!

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