Parking is “major issue” in Welwyn Garden City

PUBLISHED: 16:50 17 January 2017 | UPDATED: 16:50 17 January 2017

A civil enforcement officer in Howardsgate, Welwyn Garden City, on Monday, January 16.

A civil enforcement officer in Howardsgate, Welwyn Garden City, on Monday, January 16.

Archant

Parking has been highlighted as the number one problem for traders and customers in Welwyn Garden City.

As a result, a Town Centre Parking Consultation will be launched by Welwyn Garden City’s Business Improvement District (BID) group in spring.

The BID scheme, which officially starts on April 1, is run by a number of town centre business leaders with the aim of raising the profile of WGC, encouraging businesses to work more effectively together and creating a more profitable trading environment.

Following a year of research, the BID group has found that the “availability business parking” (parking for workers and customers) was the worst ranked problem with 71 per cent rating it as poor or very poor.

This was followed by the cost of parking (59 per cent), things to do in the evening and night time (50 per cent) and delivery, access, loading and unloading (44 per cent).

In WGC BID documentation, it is stated: “During the BID consultation process it became clear that parking was a major issue for businesses within the town, many losing staff or having difficulty recruiting.

“This information was passed to the council and they have listened.”

As part of the parking consultation, businesses will be able to give feedback and make suggestions.

The BID group’s ambitions to improve the town centre also includes the re-introduction of an improved radio system to help tackle and prevent retail crime and antisocial behaviour, increased marketing of the town, more events and activities for the public to enjoy, plus the introduction of ‘WGC Ambassadors”, who will be available to welcome visitors and provide support for businesses and events.

A Welwyn Hatfield Council spokesman said: “The parking consultation, starting later this year, aims to address a number of parking issues highlighted by WGC businesses during the BID process.

“It will explore a range of options to help improve town centre parking for businesses, residents, staff and visitors.

“We want to ensure all views are taken into account and have written to businesses urging them to nominate a point of contact to help us maximise the response rate.”

Businesses, or rather their nominated contact point for the consultation, can email parking@welhat.gov.uk with the subject “Town Centre Parking Consultation”.

They need to include their nominee’s name, title, position, work email, business address and daytime telephone number.


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