Oxford councils agree to fund controlled parking zones

Oxford County Council and Oxford City Council are to work together to tackle commuter parking problems in residential areas of Oxford after agreeing to fund new controlled parking zones.

Controlled parking zones (CPZ) help reduce congestion and pollution and encourage use of sustainable transport by removing free on-street commuter parking. Additionally, the zones also aim to improve the street scene and make streets safer and more accessible for all road users by removing obstructive parking.

The county council has identified around £661,000 for new CPZs - £250,000 from its own capital programme (agreed in previous years) and £411,000 from held or secured planning (S106) or highways (S278) agreements linked to new developments. Oxford City Council has provisionally earmarked £200,000 from its Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) funds to contribute to this programme.

Yvonne Constance, cabinet member for Environment at the county council, said: “Increasing demand for parking due to growth and development places stresses on local communities and so I am pleased that we are able to work with the city council to tackle it. Setting them up costs a great deal and the fees people pay to park in them cover the ongoing costs of running them. However most people who live in areas with controlled parking zones value them quite highly and this is something we want to be able to extend to other communities.

“Both councils are keen to work towards establishing a programme for developing new CPZs and together we are identifying the funding necessary. Much of this funding would come through the planning process which places a responsibility on developers to fund measures to mitigate the impact of their developments.”

Alex Hollingsworth, Oxford City Council’s board member for planning and transport, added: “We’ve been working closely with the county council to identify the highest priority areas for new parking zones and are ready to release the funds needed to help implement them. Parking zones not only protect residents from having their streets turned into commuter car parks, they help to reduce levels of traffic and pollution across the city.”

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