Central Bedfordshire Council's new parking strategy aims to make town centres more accessible

Central Bedfordshire Council Head Office, Priory House, Chicksands
Central Bedfordshire Council Head Office, Priory House, Chicksands

A new parking strategy for Central Bedfordshire will see the introduction of measures to deter drivers leaving vehicles on verges and footways.

Central Bedfordshire Council's Executive approved the decision to adopt a revised parking strategy today (Tuesday, August 20).

The strategy aims to manage parking in the county by supporting local businesses and allowing town centres to thrive, whilst also encouraging the use of sustainable transport options.

Central Bedfordshire Council has set out nine key objectives to focus on road safety, making the town centres in the county as accessible to residents, businesses and visitors as possible.

The council will introduce verge and footway parking enforcement to tackle inconsiderate parking, which can cause road safety and obstruct emergency access.

The strategy will involve looking at new and alternative ways of working including new technology options and the possibility of employing rapid response officers.

Councillor Nigel Young, Executive Member for Highways Delivery and Innovation at the council, said: “Parking can impact on traffic flow, influence travel behaviour and affect the environment in which we live and work. In order to manage parking in Central Bedfordshire for the benefit of everyone we have developed this parking strategy.

"This gives us a framework and a suite of tools to address parking issues and lays out the parameters for preparing local strategies.

“It has been written to provide residents, visitors, shoppers and local businesses with information about our approach to managing parking and will look to influence travel behaviour by encouraging residents to use sustainable transport options.”

The strategy will cover the next three years, when it will be replaced by a forthcoming wider review of local transport as part of a new local transport plan.

Cllr Young added: “We employ a small team of people to manage parking across the whole council area, meaning that prioritisation for their work is essential.

"This strategy aims to identify the areas in which we will focus and offers clarity around how we make decisions around parking and enforcement.”