Friday, 1 June 2012

County Council 'All Talk And No Action' Over Commuter Parking

Cllr Geoff Heathcock
(LD, Queen Edith's)

Cambridgeshire County Council has been accused of "all talk and no action" over the issue of commuter parking in residential streets.

Angry Lib Dem councillors claim they have been given hollow promises and no plans are forthcoming to solve the growing problem. Now they are demanding to know how much money is available to deal with the issue.

A review of parking in the south area of the city around Rustat Road and surrounding streets and the area around Addenbrooke's Hospital is underway but the Tory-run council has admitted there are limited funds available to carry out even minor improvements.

Officers, however, have repeatedly reassured councillors that Section 106 developer money is available.

"We cannot accept a few crumbs from the table via the county council Cabinet to deal with the number one issue in our divisions," said Lib Dem Councillor Geoff Heathcock who represents Queen Edith's on the county council.

"We all went along with a review on the basis that real solutions would be  brought forward, shared with our residents promptly and then put into place on an agreed timetable. We are repeatedly told by different officers that S106 resource is available."

He warned that plans to develop Addenbrooke's Hospital are going to be implemented and the parking problem will get worse.

Councillors are demanding attendance at Cambridge City Council's South Area Committee meetings by senior officers and Cabinet members.  

"We want to see real proposals on the table," added Cllr Heathcock, "and we want a sensible timetable for implementation of those proposals. Our residents need to be told exactly how much real cash for action rather than officer time is on the table. If the basic message this summer is that 'we cannot do much' then there will be anger from all sides from people who have put up with this for far too long."

Cllr Heathcock has called for a meeting with county council Executive Director of Environment Services, Alex Plant,county council Director of Infrastructure Management, John Onslow and councillors.

Cambridge City Councillor, George Pippas who represents Queen Edith's said: "I have been to all the meetings and heard all the promises.

"We need a co-ordinated overall strategy for the south area should be in  place so that when we put parking restrictions in one area we don't just  move the problem down the road."