Here is my statement to the County Council’s Economy & Environment Committee on Park & Ride parking charges:
I fully support the withdrawal of the Park & Ride parking charges. They have reduced usage of the P&R sites. Not only have optimistic income predictions been proved illusory, but the bus ridership has suffered and parking has been displaced to residential areas in the vicinity of the Park & Ride sites.
Cabinet’s expectation was that motorists might avoid the charges initially but then realize that Park & Ride was cheaper than city centre car parks. This was a false prediction: what actually happens in Queen Edith’s is that the motorists avoiding the charges at Babraham Road either take the P&R bus or, more frequently, take one of the numerous bus services operating in Hills Road or from the Addenbrooke’s bus station. They leave their cars in residential streets.
Commuter parking is a huge problem in Queen Edith’s due to several traffic generators: the Biomedical Campus, Homerton College, a Leisure Park and two sixth-form colleges. We need commuters’ vehicles to be in the Park & Ride sites, not parked in local streets, or worse, on local pavements.