Lisson Green visitors hit by new parking scheme

Visitor prices to rise and parking spaces to fall as estate is turned into public highway system

CONTROVERSIAL plans to change the Lisson Green Estate from a privately managed parking system into a Westminster council-run public highway system have been met with a mixed response from residents.

The estate, which is controlled by CityWest Homes, currently sees residents park in convenient locations without marked bays.

But the council hopes the new proposals, which could be put in place after the consultation ends today, will create a safer environment for all highway users.

In a document produced last June the council outlined its plans with specific proposals for the number of different parking spaces to be implemented across the estate.

However, the Lisson Green Tenants and Residents Association (TARA) is critical of the consultation process saying the council failed to pass detailed information to them.

TARA committee member Achim von Malotki said: “At the moment you can park anywhere as long as you don’t disrupt the traffic going through.

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“Westminster City Council plans to have far fewer spaces than there are now but we haven’t been told what the number of spaces is.

“After we saw the original plans we lobbied for extra spaces and were told we could have 43 more than were originally planned. But now they can’t say whether this is the case.

“That’s how the communication flow – or lack of it – is working.

“When we had a meeting with them they couldn’t give answers to the most important questions.”

The plans would see residents benefit from a reduction in the cost of annual resident parking permits from �145.60 to between �83 and �132 depending on vehicle size.

But the cost for visitors would increase from the current charges of up to �9 a day, to �2.20 per hour – equating to �22 a day.

Fellow committee member Adbul Ahad said: “I was a bit worried about the plan at first but with the roads being public highways there may be more controls that are not currently in place.

“Having said that, right now people park where they can and it’s not so much of a problem. Pedestrians and car users have come to a natural equilibrium of where to park.

“We have a big elderly community that relies on people coming here to visit them and the increase in visitor prices will make it a lot harder for people to do that.

“A lot of people who live here do so on their own and the only time they see other people is at our events or when family members come over.

“It’s an important element of their social life but it will be made a lot harder.”

Martin Low, Westminster Council city commissioner for transportation, said: “We have been working closely with local residents to improve parking conditions and create a cleaner, safer environment for people living within this estate.

“Since September, we have conducted drop in sessions to discuss the plans and sent out letters with accompanying maps clearly highlighting how and where the changes will be implemented.”