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Controversial Parking Changes Begin: News And Comment

Sunday parking charges in force from next week

Written by . Published on October 20th 2011.


Controversial Parking Changes Begin: News And Comment

MANCHESTER City Council will introduce Sunday charging across all city centre on-street bays from October 24.

The new measures will also increase the charging times on Monday - Saturday from 8am-6pm to 8am-8pm, despite a number of complaints from city centre businesses. And despite a 6100 strong petition presented by Manchester Confidential from readers, many of whom feel their livelihoods are threatened by any measure which might deter customers coming into the city centre.

"The new system will help us keep city centre congestion to a minimum while still encouraging people to come in during the evening to enjoy our restaurants and theatres."

These changes also relate to all single yellow lines across the city centre.

Parking limits at all on-street pay and display bays across the city centre will be at least two hours, instead of one hour.

The council claims the new system 'means motorists who pay for two hours will be able to park anywhere in the city centre at 6pm and stay there until 8am the following day.'

'This means they won’t need to return to their cars to move them and cause congestion by driving around to find another parking spot,' it said

Parking meters across the city centre will also be changed, so instead of paying for parking in 15-minute periods motorists will pay for half hour periods.

These are small crumbs of comfort for hard pressed businesses.

Motorists will also be able to ‘feed’ parking meters up to the maximum period. A new telephone-based cashless parking system will come into place in November, similar to that already operated by numerous private car parks across the city.

The city council also said it would be reviewing the existing city centre residents’ parking scheme and will be asking residents for their views.

Councillor Nigel Murphy, Manchester City Council’s executive member for the environment, said: "Changes were needed to our hours of operation as the number of motorists visiting the city centre, and the times in which they come in, has changed over the past few years.

"We’ve listened to concerns raised by Manchester residents and business and taken some of their comments on board. The new system will help us keep city centre congestion to a minimum while still encouraging people to come in during the evening to enjoy our restaurants and theatres.

"The new cashless parking system will also provide motorists with an alternative way of paying which for some people will be more convenient."

 

Confusion reigns over congestion issue

In the ‘Transport’ section of the Manchester Partnership’s recent State of the City report, Confidential learned many interesting things.

But a few facts jumped out.

Against the backdrop of the council’s insistence it needs to ramp up parking charge hours, including abolishing free Sunday parking, are these nuggets.

 ‘Non-car journeys (bus, tram, rail, walking, cycling) into the regional centre now account for over two-thirds of all trips, an increase from 62.7 per cent in 2005 to 69.4 per cent in 2010.

'Car usage has fallen by approximately 20 per cent while the number of rail passengers has more than doubled in the morning peak over the same period.

‘Four out of six routes monitored in Manchester are less congested.’

According to this report, congestion appears to be going down. Fewer of us are driving into the city centre, more of us are using public transport. 

The report also claims there’s been a 5.5 per cent improvement in journey times into the city centre between 2009/10 and 2004/05 on 15 monitored routes.

The council claims the usage figures are not relevant to the parking argument, however, and that the number of cars coming onto the city is a different issue to the use of parking bays.

Maybe. But it's still hard to fathom. 

Especially the one about being able to feed the meter. Surely popping out all the time to ensure you can continue filling your parking bay will only add to any problems in finding an on-street space - one of the key reasons for these proposals is to ease traffic movements and free up on-street parking. This works against that.

Meanwhile leaving your car from 6pm until 8am on a weekday is hardly helpful either.

Why would a person, for example, want to drive in, go for a drink (or ten) after work, then have to get back in via public transport for 8am the next morning to either feed the metre until the two hour time limit or move it?

It's all getting very confusing - for the council it appears some stats on congestion are relevant, others aren't and while they've listened to the businesses, who like their ideas, they've turned the other cheek to those who don't.

The changes are happening though, and the council claims it will be monitoring the effects.

We'll have a look-see as well. We just believe its fundamentally wrong. And that they're being stubborn not admitting it.

Michelle Partington of the Savin Hill stall on the Manchester Farmers Markets talked to the editor last week. She said: "This is the quietest we've known it since we started coming to central Manchester several years back. Many people have lost their jobs in the city centre, footfall is down, we're not taking anything like the same money. It's bad."

Anecdotal evidence maybe, but this is the mood of many city traders. Surely, this is simple: we should not be doing anything to jeopardise the delicate situation in the city centre. 

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

Chris-afortunadoOctober 20th 2011.

Unbelievable.

AnonymousOctober 20th 2011.

I know someone who works for MCC and, unsurprisingly, the decision to change the parking charges is motivated 100% by money. Its so disappointing that they are not listening to the residents, businesses etc. If we aren't careful our lovely city will fade away.

Aaron CornishOctober 20th 2011.

Why am I not surprised! Lucky NCP - wonder how much they will make from people who aren't aware of the new rules next Sunday!

Stephen DouglasOctober 20th 2011.

Still waiting for Murphy to explain what city centre residents are meant to do with their cars now. Many of us are ineligible under the current rules.

Yes, the permit system is being reviewed but won't go out for consultation until the New Year at the earliest. Going to cost us an absolute fortune.

4 Responses: Reply To This...
Stephen DouglasOctober 20th 2011.

Sorry, that should have said "ineligible for a perrmit under the current rules"

Kevin PeelOctober 20th 2011.

One of the things I have called for in the new scheme is a relaxing of the eligibility criteria.

Jamie BeeOctober 20th 2011.

I get home from work at 6pm and leave at 8.30am, so at the moment I pay £1.35 for the 30 minutes needed in the morning. Under these new rules it's going to be difficult to park outside my flat as the meters are limited to two hours. So, I'll have to pay £5 to park from 6-8pm and then go back down four flights of stairs at 8pm to put in £1.35 for the half hour needed in the morning.

Stephen DouglasOctober 20th 2011.

Kev, I'm aware of the call for the relaxation of the eligibility criteria (I attended the residents meetings a few weeks back).

My main complaint as a resident is that there's a gap of several months inbetween these changes and the new permit scheme coming in, during which it's going to cost an absolute fortune to park. I can't even leave it in one of the cheap car parks, as they close at midnight.

Nigel Murphy has refused to explain his comment that "it is not the intention to disadvantage residents", when it quite clearly will until the new permit scheme comes in.

AnonymousOctober 20th 2011.

Is this a response to the rejection of the congestion charge rejection. These guys just cant let go..........

1 Response: Reply To This...
AnonymousOctober 20th 2011.

its because they have allready done deals with NCP and they can't get out of them

Kevin PeelOctober 20th 2011.

I'm working closely with the council to develop a new residents parking scheme for the city centre. This will hopefully go out to consultation before the end of the year. I am determined to make sure city centre residents don't suffer as a result of any changes. I also called for a monitoring group to be set up to assess the impact of changes to on-street parking to see if any of the negative effects suggested come to fruition and act accordingly.

4 Responses: Reply To This...
NikeOctober 21st 2011.

just do it

AnonymousOctober 24th 2011.

How do we get involved, we are thinking of moving away because of this. We have lived in the NQ for 5 years but this is just to much ?

Kevin PeelOctober 24th 2011.

E-mail me on cllr.k.peel@manchester.gov.uk and I'll keep you updated.

Natasha ThomasOctober 25th 2011.

We have been asking for permits around North manchester hospital for Years.. Zero results.. Can you help with this?

AnonymousOctober 20th 2011.

I think people would accept the changes more if the council were just honest and admitted it was an easy way to raise revenue. There'd be some grumbling but an acceptance that actually, in the face of the cuts, they were probably justified.

To hang it on several rather spurious strands of argument is insulting.

4 Responses: Reply To This...
Stephen DouglasOctober 20th 2011.

They were orignally introduced in the budget proposal earlier this year, hillariously under the "cost saving" section.

AnonymousOctober 20th 2011.

It is my understanding that local authorities are not allowed by law to profit from parking schemes, or any surplus be reinvested into transport schemes. If this is right, I suspect the increase is justified on the basis that the Council currently subsidises parking enforcement.

Stephen DouglasOctober 20th 2011.

But doesn't this increase the number of hours that many "Parking enforcement officers" will be required? I know some are needed out of hours for parking on double yellows etc, but I fail to see how it can be passed off as a cost saving.

AnonymousOctober 26th 2011.

Here is what parking charges are for:

Executive – 16th February 2011
Budget Proposals for the Neighbourhood Services Directorate
In considering whether to take such action the Council has an obligation to exercise its functions so as to secure expeditious, convenient and safe movement of vehicular and other traffic and the provision of suitable and adequate parking facilities on and off the highway taking into account the factors contained in
section 122 Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984

Here is the issues to be addressed from the above.

A further study will be carried out to inform the final decision on this proposal.
The study will consider the existing and predicted levels and demand for
parking; the availability and pricing of on and off street parking places; the
extent of the congestion problem at the times when it is proposed that the
controlled parking zone will operate; the availability, accessibility and quality of
alternative public transport and the extent of competing demands for road
space and kerb space. Introducing charging for Council owned district centre
car parks will be introduced where it will not simply displace parking to
residential areas. These proposals will be the subject of a formal consultation
process and a further report to the Executive.

Here is the use of parking money for an alleged TRANSPORT SCHEME.

3. Neighbourhood Services – The Village
Pedestrian Zone: To increase the
capital budget by £50,000 in 2011/12, funded by the Parking Reserve. (from today's Executive Committee)

It is interesting that no one seems to have serve an FOI to get full details of the further study with compare with other studies and the traffic counts.

the Whalley RangerOctober 20th 2011.

Some only learn the hard way...

Charlie BOctober 20th 2011.

Kevin: Do you support these parking measures as applied to non-residents?

Jamie BeeOctober 20th 2011.

"means motorists who pay for two hours will be able to park anywhere in the city centre at 6pm and stay there until 8am the following day." - They're saying this as though it's a positive thing, even though you can do the same now and it's free.

"Parking meters across the city centre will also be changed, so instead of paying for parking in 15-minute periods motorists will pay for half hour periods." - Again, not a positive. This means that if you're going into a shop you have to pay for 30 minutes (£1.35) instead of just the 15 minutes that you need. This will make the council a great deal of money, especially as the machines don't give change so lot's of people will pay £1.50.

1 Response: Reply To This...
Kevin PeelOctober 20th 2011.

Jamie I encourage you to keep your eyes out for the consultation on the new residents parking scheme that will be happening soon. Will be a big benefit to city centre residents.

JohnthebriefOctober 20th 2011.

Manchester City Council's campaign of contempt against its own residents continues. These people are so arrogant and out of touch, it's amazing they even bothered with their sham "consultation" at all.

2 Responses: Reply To This...
ConmanOctober 20th 2011.

Calm down dear.

Calum McGOctober 25th 2011.

I'm with John. It was mere lip service again.

PaulaOctober 20th 2011.

The council are trying to vouch for the charge, and the reason they are giving is ridiculous, you can park from 6pm - 8am for free now... as of monday you can do exactly the same, but for a fee!!
I live in town and use the street and the NCP currently, I didnt even know there was a parking permit scheme and i've been in town for 5 years!

2 Responses: Reply To This...
Stephen DouglasOctober 20th 2011.

Paula, the eligibility criteria for the permits were such that most people weren't actually eligbile. That's one of the things Kevin Peel (a city centre councillor) is trying to change, but it won't happen for at least a few months if at all.

Kevin PeelOctober 20th 2011.

Paula it is my sincere hope that in a few months we'll have a fantastic and well advertised scheme for you to sign up to.

Stephen DouglasOctober 20th 2011.

I do think it's a shame that Manchester Confidential did not promote the petition they set up on the councils website in the same way they promoted their own.

AnonymousOctober 20th 2011.

Perhaps they felt it was a fait accompli?

AnonymousOctober 20th 2011.

We have learned one thing from this episode,it is that when the Council put something out to " consultation" it might as well say "it is going to happen no matter what,we'll just let you have a moan about it first" vote them out.

1 Response: Reply To This...
Stephen DouglasOctober 20th 2011.

I don't get a vote about the councillor who forced this through - he represents Hulme.

Ironically, given his repeated bitching about people parking in Hulme and walking into the city centre, I think I'm going end up doing that as a direct consequence of this.

Unless he can explain how residents aren't going to be disadvantaged. Anything to say, Councillor Murphy?

FurFoxAcheOctober 20th 2011.

Nothing like a bit of joined up thinking. The residents affected have to wait until months after the introduction of the new parking charges for a consultation on a new residents parking scheme. Shocking. Couldn't have done it at the same time? No, that would have meant saving money!

Jonathan SchofieldOctober 20th 2011.

Anonymous, I think it was a massive fait accompli and it mightily annoys us here. The decision was made and then tweaks happened seemingly as a sop. This is strange. Manchester council has one of the lowest turnouts in its wards in the UK, it should be bending over backwards to make sure that voices other than those in the Town Hall are listened to.

AnonymousOctober 20th 2011.

how come they spring the decision on us so quickly ,it only gives residents and busniess three days to make other arrangements,do they hope to make a killing on parking tickets orl will they have the sence to give people a bit of leaway,somehow i doubt it

P. Dan. TicOctober 20th 2011.

Its 'meter' not 'metre'.

2 Responses: Reply To This...
Calum McGOctober 21st 2011.

Your so Pendantic

ConmanOctober 26th 2011.

I think you meant 'You're so pedantic', not 'your'. ;)

Some FellaOctober 20th 2011.

I have to go into town every monday night. I used to drive because i am fat and lazy. This week i will use my bike. The charges wont stop me going into town to do my business but it will change my travel habits, which in this case means i wont use my car. I consider this a good thing. Stop wetting your pants everybody and making out that you are some sort of oppressed minority group. Just change your travel habits and become a smug git - just like me.

6 Responses: Reply To This...
AnonymousOctober 20th 2011.

I would love to but I don't work in cycling distance of my work place and my office doesn't have any public transport links.

AnonymousOctober 20th 2011.

remember that when you get knocked off your bike

AsinineOctober 20th 2011.

Oh dear some fella, the point is the health of the city centre, not your health. Have you ever tried taking any substantial shopping home on a bike, maybe a quilt from Debenhams?

AnonymousOctober 24th 2011.

How to you ride your bike to Hassingden with 20kg of documents. Look at the big picture.

Colin SwinneyOctober 24th 2011.

Eventually you wont be even cycling in on a Monday night! Wait till you have a taste of the weather on a bike!

Lisa SpeakmanOctober 25th 2011.

I visited Japan, where there are 1000s of people cycling around Tokyo and Kyoto on their bikes, too and from work, because the pavements are extra wide and they are allowed to ride on them. There is no way in hell I would risk my life riding on a bike through the city centre! The number of times I have almost been hit whilst in my car is enough to make me realise you are dicing with death!!

Stephen DouglasOctober 20th 2011.

Yeah, not sure how that applies to people who live in the city centre (you did say "everybody"...)

AnonymousOctober 20th 2011.

I've noticed that the houses over on George Leigh Street have reserved residents parking outside them and they're practically city centre.
I'm not moaning, good luck to those residents, I just wondered how they're different.

1 Response: Reply To This...
AnonymousOctober 20th 2011.

Possibly because the residents purchased them at the same time as their apartments? Just a thought.

Jamie BeeOctober 20th 2011.

Me again. I've just realised that my parking charges are going to go up 269% by these changes being made.

It's the city, duffusOctober 20th 2011.

From now on I will ease-in quantities of coins into those meters. Will it amount to Quadrozingbatsillion quid? I don't think so...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cKKHSAE1gIs

1 Response: Reply To This...
AnonymousOctober 20th 2011.

I knew there was a reason I come on here (mini me)

AnonymousOctober 21st 2011.

what a load of nonsense... "to enjoy our restaurants and theatres"

errmm... enjoy how many theatres?
I can think of 3 in the city!

Restaurants are struggling as it is..

Plus where did the 'ghost' congestion come from.. sure we have rush hour traffic but normally the congestion is caused by ridiculously timed events and road works.

Bollocks!

J CampionOctober 21st 2011.

It is nonsense and the council forgetting their responsibilities. Shame on them.

Calum McGOctober 21st 2011.

F*ck the Council. Money-grabbing b*stards.

EditorialOctober 21st 2011.

Er Ali. Calm down. Abusive stuff that goes too far will be removed.

1 Response: Reply To This...
Calum McGOctober 25th 2011.

Sorry. Thank u for leaving it, though :)

Ryan O'hanlonOctober 21st 2011.

Plus where did the 'ghost' congestion come from.. sure we have rush hour traffic but normally the congestion is caused by ridiculously timed events and road works.

Spot on!

Stuart HayesOctober 21st 2011.

Crazy. Foolish. Stupid. Blinkered.

G KhanOctober 21st 2011.

Are they the four members of the Stone Roses? Now called after the rush on ticket sales Rich. Justified. Smug. Overwhelmed.

AnonymousOctober 21st 2011.

watch the council retune the traffic lights and prioities to get rid of the jams and declare its all down to the new parking rules they really belive we are all stupid

1 Response: Reply To This...
AnonymousNovember 4th 2011.

if only they would, though there's a few nice adverts here and there they want you to catch

funboi123October 21st 2011.

Its a bloody joke! it went up to 65p per 15 minutes not long ago as it is, now they're going to £1.35 per 30 minutes??

ATTN the person with a calculator in town hall 65p + 65p = £1.30, not £1.35

Again, that elusive 5p they always add in, in the hope you wont have it and so you'll put extra into their coffers.

And as for the telephone payment system, whats the bets there will be a 'handling charge' for using that too.

The only way Manchester can show this ignorant council, who don't listen to their people, is to vote them out next time round.

Lisa CraggOctober 21st 2011.

I only ever go shopping in the city centre on a Sunday as it's free parking. Looks like the Trafford Centre will be getting my money from now on. Ridiculous!

2 Responses: Reply To This...
Colin SwinneyOctober 24th 2011.

I agree. Or even a 45 min ride up to Leeds. Heard its still free on a Sunday! Alternatively, why not park up in Hulme!! (JOKE!)

Stephen DouglasOctober 25th 2011.

No, park up in Hulme - their councillor is responsible for this, let him deal with the fallout.

Antony FoggOctober 21st 2011.

Just means i be going to the Trafford Centre more to shop now - shame as I like Manchester city center.

shabob1October 21st 2011.

I will go to other places like the Reebok or Trafford Centre which is a shame because I really like Manchester but genuinely can't afford to go. Talk about sounding the death knoll for businesses. How foolish and mercenary.

It's the city, duffusOctober 21st 2011.

Apparently, none of the city centre businesses signed the e-petition.

Have they been counted at with imminent knockouts to follow?

Nick CowanOctober 21st 2011.

Won't go there till after 8pm. End of ...... ?

AnonymousOctober 21st 2011.

On a Sunday as well? Seriously?

Have I just been out of the loop, because I work in the city centre and hadn't heard of this impending doom?

This also means that I'll need to watch out on Sundays when, after paying and displaying, I get my usual parking fine for 'not displaying a ticket'. The best one I had was when they put the fine on my windscreen RIGHT NEXT TO THE VALID TICKET.

2 Responses: Reply To This...
AnonymousOctober 24th 2011.

funny i had the same thing happen to me and when i went on line to pay it took me 4 days before they would accept my payment

AnonymousNovember 4th 2011.

I had my ticked appeal rejected and then the system claimed there was an error consistently until the charge went back up to £70 when the system started working again

Jemma Taylor shared this on Facebook on October 23rd 2011.
Val WhiteheadOctober 23rd 2011.

Its unfair that people who live in the city centre have to pay for parking. The councils keep saying they want Manchester to be a vibrant city but want to be greedy as well. It will end up a ghost time as people will just start selling up. Its just always take, take take from them. Wonder how much the councilors pay to park in the city centre.

2 Responses: Reply To This...
AnonymousOctober 26th 2011.

Dear Val Most people who live in the city centre pay for parking either in their service charges or separately for use of their building's car park. Mine with interest charges on buying the space and the service charge for the car park
cost £!600 per year.
Most developments in the last six years have parking at one space per flat.

Stephen DouglasOctober 27th 2011.

I've lived in my building since 2000, since before the current planning regulations regarding parking spaces came in.

It has a handful of parking spaces for those in the "luxury" flats on the top floor. The fact that those spaces exist is enough for the council to deny me a residents parking permit, even though I don't have a space myself.

AnonymousOctober 23rd 2011.

This will be a good thing for the City all round. People will consider alternative modes of transport, congestion during peak times will be reduced and the health of the citizens will be improved. And the biggest bonus, no more lazy slobs hogging parking bays around the city centre whilst stores are still open. If you need to come into the City you will and that's the Council's point.

The City is what it is because the Council is prepared to stick its head above the parapet and say "we know what you want but we've got to do what is best economically". You can't have it every way. We rejected the congestion charge, everyone knew there would be a Plan B so accept it and move on. And no I don't work for the Council, just open-minded.

5 Responses: Reply To This...
AnonymousOctober 24th 2011.

What about local residents, why do we have to pay road tax, council tax, massive mortgages and services charges. We have added to the NQ community for 5 years now and are now being forced away because of this.... We can't afford a bill of over a grand a year to park outside where we live.

AnonymousOctober 24th 2011.

well you and the council will be happy whan no one comes into manchester and all the big stores are gone and the clubs are all closed at night and we will be paying through the nose to park for 30 mins wake up take off the rose glasses and unblock you nose and smell what we can all smell manchester rotting from the inside from lack of use ...... will the last one out please turn of the light

AnonymousOctober 25th 2011.

A tad melodramatic there. This will change people's mindset not their needs.

AnonymousOctober 25th 2011.

A tad melodramatic there. This will change people's mindset not their needs.

AnonymousOctober 25th 2011.

A tad melodramatic there. This will change people's mindset not their needs.

AnonymousOctober 24th 2011.

"sale now on all prices up "

AnonymousOctober 24th 2011.

Might pop out of my apartment at 6.01pm tonight to see the lines of traffic wardens waiting, tickets in hand to slap them on rows of cars.
On a side note, as somebody who works in communications, I've got to say that the MCC have done nowhere near enough to promote these changes. Yes, there's stickers on the machines, but if you're used to parking for free after 6pm and on Sunday, then you don't go to the machine, you park and walk.

1 Response: Reply To This...
AnonymousOctober 24th 2011.

Got home at 6.20 and all of the parking bays outside of my apartment (which are usually full) were all empty, except for one car which was getting a ticket put on it.
Congratulations MCC, yes there's no congestion but there's also no cars paying for tickets or people parking up to spend money in the bars, restaurants and shops

AnonymousOctober 24th 2011.

Thats the idea there're not after the revenue from the machines there're after the £35 they get for parking tickets

AnonymousOctober 24th 2011.

This is one step to far and we are considering moving away from the City Centre, Its stressful enough as it is with out being robbed to park, its over 100 pounds a month, its unaffordable. We are part of a community for which the council have little regard. We work hard and just want to come home without feeling like we are being ripped off. The council simply don't care about residents, its really bad.

AnonymousOctober 24th 2011.

Another issue for the NQ is that without single yellows and loading bays to park in at 6 there arn't going to be enough spaces. Its just going to be to stressful. The council don't seem to care about local residents. We really need to vote them out at the next local elections. I pay massive council tax, the street is dirty, the road is so damaged it sends vibrations through the building, our car gets robbed a few times a year and there are scag-heads everywhere, things are going down hill and this is a kick in the face for local residents....

AnonymousOctober 24th 2011.

I can understand that the council need more money in the face of budget cuts so making the pay&display bays in use till 8pm is forgiveable.

But making ALL loading bays and single yellow lines follow the 8am-8pm rule (inc. sundays ) is just hugely mean spirited for all the residents of the city centre. It makes it plain as day that this isn't anything to do with congestion at all.

Colin SwinneyOctober 24th 2011.

Democracy! The idea is you still have to fight for it!!

AnonymousOctober 25th 2011.

I've just noticed that Manchester Confidential has not posted my comment supporting the charge. What's the matter Manchester Confidential? Think you have the power to halt this like you thought you did a couple of months ago? Don't like views that do not support your own? Yes, I gathered that.

1 Response: Reply To This...
FurFoxAcheOctober 25th 2011.

ManCon don't tend to remove comments. Suggest its something with your PC as you've repeated this 3 times.

AnonymousOctober 25th 2011.

Why are all you residents panicking? Just get on to the Council and look for a solution. Permit Parking is an option and I am sure the Council will be doing an impact assessment following the new plans. Be proactive not reactive - seek a solution and don't hide behind the problem.

AnonymousOctober 25th 2011.

Why are all you residents panicking? Just get on to the Council and look for a solution. Permit Parking is an option and I am sure the Council will be doing an impact assessment following the new plans. Be proactive not reactive - seek a solution and don't hide behind the problem.

1 Response: Reply To This...
Stephen DouglasOctober 25th 2011.

There's already a parking permit, that has so many restrictions that there's only approx 30 people who have one (council's own figure).

They're looking into changing it, but this won't even go out for consultation until the new year. In the meantime, the council expects residents to pay to park for the extra 2 hours per weekday, plus Sundays, for the several months that the process will take.

I have attempted to get various people in the council to suggest what we should be doing with our cars in the meantime given that Councillor Murphy has stated "it is not our intention to disadvantage residents", but he has been unable to actually suggest a way in which we will not be disadvantaged during the several months the permit consultation will take.

We've sought a pro-active solution - I personally have been trying to get the pwermit system reviewed since I saw the proposal to change the parking hours, back in March. With the exception of Kevin Peel, I've had very little success trying to get the council to appreciate what the problem is with regards to residents.

The fact of the matter is that the impact on residents was simply not taken into consideration, and I for one cannot afford to pay to park 7 days per week for the several months it wil take to resolve.

AnonymousOctober 25th 2011.

Why are all you residents panicking? Just get on to the Council and look for a solution. Permit Parking is an option and I am sure the Council will be doing an impact assessment following the new plans. Be proactive not reactive - seek a solution and don't hide behind the problem.

1 Response: Reply To This...
AnonymousOctober 25th 2011.

What are you talking about. A parking permit is now 800 pounds a year. I don't have 800 pounds a year, we are worried about our jobs, we pay huge council tax, road tax and service charges. We simply can't afford it. Whats next no parking till 10, 24hr, where does it end. Plus without single yellows and loading bays at 6 there isn't enough room. Nobody has thought this through. I rang the council parking office this morning to try and understand eligibility, the website hasn't been updated, they don't know what the policy is. The lady on the phone told me they had had scores of calls and they just can't help people. She told me the council simply haven't planned this properly and even the parking office don't know whats going on. Its a total incompetent mess. Ring them and speak to them yourself and you try and seek a solution.

AnonymousOctober 25th 2011.

My comment would seem to have been taken down, or I cocked it up. Top and bottom the council don't know their own policy of resident passes. Ring them up and ask them they simply haven't a clue. One department doesn't know what the other is doing. I you don't believe me ring them yourself.

Jonathan SchofieldOctober 25th 2011.

We don't take down comments Anonymous unless personally abusive of others. You can abuse us pretty much as you want.

1 Response: Reply To This...
AnonymousOctober 26th 2011.

The rant facility doesn't work properly and hasn't done since the most recent redesign.

I have found that the only way I can both post (using my preferred pseudonym rather than the default option of 'post reply') and then read my contribution, is if I clear cookies before and after posting, making sure that before posting, I log in on the front page, following links through to the page I want to contribute to.

If this isn't sorted out, more and more people will start shopping at the Trafford Centre. Or something.

the Whalley RangerOctober 25th 2011.

Some only learn the hard way...

AnonymousOctober 25th 2011.

Would it be fair to say that MCC has allowed NCP to build up to much of a monopoly on parking in the city,where is the competition that should help keep prices in check,it seems that JC decaux and NCP are running the Town Hall

AnonymousOctober 25th 2011.

I just got a ticket for parking and not displaying a ticket was there any sign's saying new charges in operation? no there wasn't if you always got free parking after 6pm why should you suddenly think to go check the machine to see if changes had been made especially with no announcements! not happy, will not be eating at that restaurant again not when you get tickets!

2 Responses: Reply To This...
IzzyOctober 25th 2011.

....and why is the fault of the restaurant? Take up the issue with MCC, the restaurant is likely struggling already, as many are; do you suggest they add a little note to the menu informing customers of new parking charges on the public highway outside their premises?

AnonymousOctober 27th 2011.

If the signage hasnt been updated, you are well within your right to dispute the parking charge. Write a letter and they will cancel it.
But please dont blame the restaurant for your choice of parking. How are they to know you came by car and not taxi/ tram etc?

AnonymousOctober 25th 2011.

my comments just been taken down as well, why dont they want people to know that I just got a ticket for not knowing you now need to pay to park after 6pm. presumably because the council thought it best not to inform the residents. as i said before I will simply avoid eating in town if I cant park. this will have an effect on business as more and more people turn away from teh CC. at least the Trafford centre has free parking and much nicer restaurants!

1 Response: Reply To This...
G KhanOctober 25th 2011.

The Trafford Centre has much nicer restaurants than the city centre, is that what you are really saying. Mr Anonymous has clearly had his tastebuds surgically removed

Simon TurnerOctober 25th 2011.

You've lost it mate.

Stephen DouglasOctober 25th 2011.

The comment bit doesn't refresh for me unless I hit ctrl-F5 - so it doesn't show my own comments until I do. I suspect that's what's happening to the posters who think they're being censored. Then at some point, it'll get refreshed and they'll feel a bit silly.

Something to consider fixing, ManConf?

AnonymousOctober 25th 2011.

looks like the trafford centre is going to get a lot busier. Another fine example of politicians not having a clue about supporting local business growth.

AnonymousOctober 26th 2011.

my mate chaz got a ticket last night. Didnt remember about the reg changes. He's well miffed.

AnonymousOctober 26th 2011.

actually he's just told me he didnt even know about the changes - and he lives in the city ! - what a berk :-/

Ed HughesOctober 27th 2011.

If it hadn't been for ManCon, my girlfriend would have got a ticket the other night after parking in a regular haunt, only for me to suddenly remember that the changes were supposed to be in place sometime this week...

The arguments against these changes are well documented, but the fact that MCC haven't even publicised this (in any real way) is absolutely disgraceful. Seriously, how many people who don't read ManCon even know about this change? Where is the advertising campaign? Another example of the Council *wanting* people to get caught out so they can make a few quid.

One question - can anyone tell me how far out of the city centre these changes are going to be enforced? Castlefield, for example? Any precise boundaries? I can imagine it being massively confusing around the M.E.N./Blackfriars area in particular...

2 Responses: Reply To This...
Stephen DouglasOctober 27th 2011.

I believe it's everything inside the inner ring road, on the Manchester side of the river. So Castlefield is included, the St. Georges area the other side of the Mancunian Way aren't. Southern Gateway is included, the area to the rear of MMU isn't.

I've had a look the past few days, and although there's been more parked cars outside my flat than I thought there would be between 6-8pm, a quick glance showed that approximately 50% hadn't paid the meters so were presumably chancing it. I haven't seen any of them with tickets though, so I wonder if there's an unspoken grace period or whether the cuts to the number of attendants in combination with the 33% increase in hours they're needed means more cars are getting away with it.

Ed HughesOctober 27th 2011.

I wouldn't be surprised if - far from chancing it - a large majority of those drivers simply had no idea the changes had even been put in place...

Jonathan SchofieldOctober 27th 2011.

Ed. The council have completely got this wrong. It's a foolish and stupid thing to do.

Ed HughesOctober 27th 2011.

Completely agree Jon, it doesn't make sense on practically any level except financially (for the Council), and even then, surely it makes more sense to encourage people to spend money in the city centre, not dissuade them from coming in because of parking charges? Madness.

And Stephen, thanks for the help - I just found the council's map of the parking zone, courtesy of my flatmate: maps.google.co.uk/…/ms…

Stephen DouglasOctober 27th 2011.

Just occurred to me that we can't win - if the streets are devoid of cars between 6 & 8, then the aim of reducing parking congestion was met.

Alternatively, if they're packed, then it shows it hasn't stopped people coming into the city. The council will spin it however it suits them and we'll have no argument.

1 Response: Reply To This...
AnonymousOctober 28th 2011.

Stephen.. the question is what is the information about congestion etc on which the policy is based. Have you asked for it.?

And as for it being packed, this means the policy hasn't worked. I posted the objectives earlier on and also a note about a survey which was to be done in the Spring.

the Whalley RangerOctober 27th 2011.

Two questions remain unanswered:

What do the Council expect to make per annum on this?

Will they review their policy if they miss that target?

This is the 50p tax rate argument, surely it applies here...

AnonymousOctober 27th 2011.

A warden has just told me the council had a soft touch approach at the beginning of the week,presumably to lure us in to a false sense of security,but now they have put extra shifts on to ticket everyone. All those signs saying I love Manchester and not one to tell us we are about to be shafted.

2 Responses: Reply To This...
Stephen DouglasOctober 27th 2011.

Yep, that fits in with what I've seen - lots of cars that hadn't paid but hadn't been ticketed earlier in the week, but I've seen double figures whilst walking back from the aquatics centre.

They could have put warning notices on the windscreens of those who would have received tickets earlier in the week, if they genuinely wanted to give people time to adjust.

Stephen DouglasOctober 27th 2011.

Sorry, that should have read "I've seen double figures with tickets on whilst walking back from the aquatics centre"

AnonymousOctober 28th 2011.

Dear Whalley Ranger Why don't you ask the Council for their estimate of the yield and and cost of the charges compared with the actuals October to December last year? Its easy to do the FOI form in on the Councils website.

You can actually ask for a review in two ways. 1) a petition followed up by a request for a report to be considered by the relevant scrutiny committee, 2 ) and lobby the councillors if it is put on the agenda.

Democracy involve engagement in it, rather than posting on Man Con

2 Responses: Reply To This...
the Whalley RangerOctober 29th 2011.

A forum's a forum. A FOI is a FOI.

Thanks for clarifying that.

Democracy comes in all shapes and forms...signing petitions, participating in marches, engaging in political discussions with your peer group, voting for a council that actually represents you etc.

Are you saying I'm not doing that?

Jonathan SchofieldOctober 31st 2011.

For God's sake Anon, we had more than 6,000 people petition with no. Look up the definition of democracy would you. 6,000 is more than double any of the votes of any city councillor of Manchester.

AnonymousOctober 31st 2011.

Congratulations MCC its working ,all the parking bays on Liverpool Rd Castlefield are empty ,mind you so are the pubs and resturants

1 Response: Reply To This...
JoanOctober 31st 2011.

Anon - they usually are fairly empty at 4.00pm on a Monday; charging at this time on a Monday is nothing new. The test is what happens after 6.00pm and on a Sunday.

Jonathan SchofieldOctober 31st 2011.

This is the most pig-headed thing the Council have done in the city centre for years. It's stubborn and unpopular.

Jamie BeeOctober 31st 2011.

I walked from Tariff St to Tescos on Piccadilly yesterday morning and every car I passed had PCN (parking ticket) on the window, this is obviously due to a lack of communication on the part of MCC. A ticket on the machine doesn't help people who've been parking free after 6pm and on Sunday as they don't look at the machine.

MCC must be making a fortune from this stupid change, but perhaps that was the plan all along. Anyway, I've submitted my FOI request and am looking forward to the reply.

G KhanOctober 31st 2011.

Jamie that's a good idea. Make money from the charge through fines of people who don't know there is a charge and then maybe after two or three months say hey we've been listening to people all along so we were wrong and now we're going to remove the charge. Best of both worlds. Doubles all round.

Stephen DouglasNovember 2nd 2011.

Got a reply to my objection to the proposal, 10 days after said proposal became fact. The reply addresses things that I made clear were not issues (such as the 2 hour parking - I live in zone 2, which already had a max stay of 2 hours). It's worded in such a way as leads me to believe that my objection was not even read.

So much for democracy.

1 Response: Reply To This...
AnonymousNovember 3rd 2011.

Democracy as far as I know is not about getting your own way.

Stephen DouglasNovember 3rd 2011.

No, but it is (partially) about having your objections at least read and hopefully taken into consideration.

AnonymousNovember 4th 2011.

If you request the Manchester City Centre Parking Study Report from March 2011, you can see what they based their data on. 4 days worth of parking surveys in March 2011 and a year's worth of congestion analysis from 1st September 2009 to 31st August 2010. Two vastly different variables have been correlated and a rather slapdash conclusion has been reached. The reasoning the Council provides for the increase in parking charges is not mentioned in the Transport Strategy for Manchester November 2010. Is this going to be investigated further?

2 Responses: Reply To This...
Stephen DouglasNovember 4th 2011.

It's to pay for the pedestrianisation (is that a word?) of Canal Street. There's an item in the minutes of the council executive, dated Oct 26 (Item 12 - Capital Increases, appendix 1) where the pedestrianisation scheme ("Village Pedestrian Zone") is shown as costing £50,000 to be funded from the Parking Reserve Fund.

The parking reserve fund is where revenues from parking goes, and is ringfenced for transport & parking improvements. However, the use of the fund is meant to be for parking improvements, and if none are needed then it can be considered for other transport schemes. It's not meant to be increased with the intention of paying for a scheme, and this directly contradicts the reason given when my objection was rejected, which was that it was to reduce parking congestion and (this was explicitly stated) was not intended to generate revenue.

An anonymous commenter posted this above, but to my shame I didn't really pay attention. I've since been pointed in the right direction by another councillor, and it's correct. It's been admitted by Councillor Pat Karney, after I forced him to back down on his claims that it's to make up for the shortfall from central government - that would definitely be illegal for the council to do.

Stephen DouglasNovember 4th 2011.

Just to be clear and to hopefully alleviate any concerns that editorial staff may have about my post, the comments of Cllrs Karney and Ramsbottom that led to this, plus Cllr Karney's admission are available on a publicly-viewable forum. I can provide details on request.

Hero
ashimotoNovember 4th 2011.

as if things are not hard enough for the bars and restaurants in the city they might as well build barriers around the perimeter to stop people coming in

Calum McGNovember 4th 2011.

Why can't we have a Council that doesn't fudge things. If I did that in my day job, I'd get fired. But in the public domain it's fine to just make it up as you want and spin it as much as you see fit. Nonsense.

AnonymousNovember 8th 2011.

Had fun explaining our new parking rules to some German guests last night,they recommended that we should just shoot the Council, never thought I'd find myself agreeing with a German

AnonymousJanuary 19th 2012.

www.localgov.co.uk/index.cfm…

I think we need to keep fighting this ridiculous parking charges in Manchester!!

1 Response: Reply To This...
AnonymousJanuary 19th 2012.

If it's considered a debacle when they manage to stop the changes I wonder what they'd call our situation

CobbydalerJanuary 29th 2012.

So now they're reducing the width of Deansgate to discourage people from driving into the centre. Really joined up thinking when Great Ancoats Street is down to one lane in several places due to roadworks! I'm beginning to think the council are taking bungs from the Trafford Centre!

Jonathan SchofieldJanuary 30th 2012.

Cobbydaler - I've got a call into the Council asking what on earth is going on.

1 Response: Reply To This...
CobbydalerJanuary 30th 2012.

It would be nice to know!

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