Council goahead for £1 million parking plan

Bank Street car park, Brighouse, one of 14 where charges will be introduced.
Bank Street car park, Brighouse, one of 14 where charges will be introduced.

A HUGE parking shake-up, which along with an increase in charges should raise nearly £1 million, has been agreed by Calderdale Council Lab-Lib-Dem coalition.

Motorists will be able to formally comment on the details when a series of Traffic Regulation Orders are published over the next six months.

Economy and environment spokesman Coun Barry Collins said: “We cannot afford to let Halifax carry on subsidising parking in the rest of Calderdale.

“And if we don’t make these changes, we will be forced to reduce other council services like those for the vulnerable, the elderly and children.”

Councillors have already agreed to put up parking fees in 2014 to raise about £245,000.

Another £660,000 will come from a variety of measures which include extending the period for parking charges in Halifax from 6pm until 8pm, introducing charges on streets around the Calderdale Royal Hospital and on another 14 council-run car parks.

About 4,200 residents are expected to be charged £25 a year for permits to park outside their homes and limited free parking on Saturdays could be replaced with a £1 ticket.

Councillor Collins (Lab, Illingworth and Mixenden) said new charges on some car parks could be delayed where it would have a damaging effect on traders in Calder Valley towns still struggling to recover from the recent floods.

And some reductions are planned for parking in the outer area of Halifax because of competition from private parking providers.

“It is a balanced, intelligent and sensible package of measures which we will review in the light of experience,” he said.

Many of the proposals were agreed in principle two years ago but were never implemented because politicians regarded them as too contentious. But with no elections until May 2014, the council’s Labour/Lib-Dem coalition has decided that the time is right to progress them.

The measures approved by the cabinet last night will mean councillors having to pay to pay 70p an hour to use the Halifax Town Hall car park and charges being imposed on Skircoat Road, beside the Shay stadium.

The cost of long stay parking in Halifax could be reduced to £3 a day and motorists will be allowed to park all day on outer on-street bays for a maximum of £3.50.

A major scheme is being developed to regularise parking at King Cross, which is expected to include new charges and restrictions.