Chance to have your say on future of parking
Now’s your chance to have a say on Babergh and Mid Suffolk’s future parking strategy - with residents, businesses and visitors across the districts urged to help shape plans for the next decade.
Whether in car parks, outside our homes, on the high street, or at local tourist hotspots, few subjects evoke as much passion as parking.
The need to support the two districts’ economic regeneration, whilst simultaneously meeting environmental and alternative sustainable travel ambitions, is a difficult balance to achieve – and now residents are being asked to help by sharing their experiences.
The councils are working with key stakeholders, including Suffolk County Council as the highways authority, town and parish councils, business groups, as well as local organisations to find the best future solution for everyone. They are also keen to hear the views of individuals via an online questionnaire on the councils' website, running until 28 September. Anyone wishing to take part who does not have internet access should call 02392 432756 to request a paper copy.
Cllr Jessica Fleming, cabinet member for environment at Mid Suffolk District Council, said:
“Our aim is to develop a parking strategy that is fit for the future, so our district can continue to thrive and be a place people are proud to call home. We must ensure shoppers, tourists, visitors, residents, workers and commuters have access to sufficient, good quality, safe, welcoming and easy-to-use parking.
“Of course, the parking strategy must reflect both the need for private vehicle parking and our climate change ambitions, and support more sustainable transport options such as buses, trains, and cycling, to connect our communities.
“I would encourage everyone who can, to share their experiences of parking in Mid Suffolk, so we can see key areas for development and focus, to help shape the future for our towns.”
Cllr Elisabeth Malvisi, cabinet member for environment at Babergh District Council, said:
“The right level and types of car parking facilities, and the right controls for their use, are vital if our communities are to continue to thrive.
“This includes helping to support our environment by providing opportunities to shift motorist behaviour towards more sustainable travel – improving air quality and biodiversity, and reducing CO2 emissions from congestion. However, we must balance this with the developmental and regeneration visions of our towns.
“I encourage everyone in Babergh to have their say in the consultation, as your feedback is vital in helping to develop a strategy that keeps Babergh a place we’re all proud to call home.”
Any findings from the consultation will build on the Joint Area Parking Management Plan, which was approved by both cabinets last year.
They'll also follow the car parking study report for Babergh, which further highlighted the need for a medium to long term parking strategy.
The strategy will reflect feedback from the councils’ active travel consultation too. This consultation, which ran during the summer, received over 1,000 responses in answer to plans to create a local cycling and walking infrastructure plan. This would support sustainable travel and wayfinding improvements, both key elements of town visions.
The final parking strategy is due to be approved by cabinets in Autumn 2022.