Councillors delay new Welwyn Garden City parking zones
Matthew Smith, Local Democracy Reporter
- Credit: Archant
New parking restrictions in Welwyn Garden City have been delayed, after a councillor said it was like 'using a sledgehammer to crack a walnut'.
Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council brought forward plans to introduce new parking measures in both Welwyn Garden City and Hatfield, in a bid to make it easier for residents to find a space.
However, the proposals for an area off Broadwater Road will be delayed after councillors narrowly refused to support all day restrictions.
The proposals would have seen the permit zone in operation between 8am and 6pm from Monday to Saturday, but officers have been asked to explore shorter restrictions.
Liberal Democrat Peartree ward councillor Russ Platt supported the introduction of a permit scheme, but said the proposed measures were like “using a sledgehammer to crack a walnut”, and asked the council to consider alternatives to ensure any measures do not penalise residents.
The introduction of a permit zone is in response to concerns over rail commuters using the surrounding roads to park during the day, and ahead of the completion of a number of new developments in the area.
Over two consultations, there were 43 objections to the plans, with a total response rate of around 30 per cent of the 380 residents affected. Officers said this figure was in-line with what is expected, although some councillors asked for further consultation to take place prior to any permits being introduced.
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Councillors reached a stalemate on whether to introduce the permit zone at 5-5, with the panel’s chair Councillor Samuel Kasumu, Conservative for Hatfield Villages, having the deciding vote to reject the proposals.
He asked officers to return to the panel with an amended proposal, rather than consulting residents again.
Councillors also unanimously voted to approve a new permit scheme for Ellenbrook, in Hatfield, and to amend parking restrictions near Stanborough Park, in Welwyn Garden City.
The changes in Hatfield will affect properties near to the University of Hertfordshire to address concerns over student’s parking.
The changes were approved by the council’s cabinet planning and parking panel at a meeting on March 10.
As councillors unanimously approved these two changes the zones can be introduced without needing the cabinet’s approval, although no date was set for the implementation of the changes.
Click here for the full list of wards and roads affected by the approved proposals.