N.B. As I understand it, this proposal is not coronavirus related. It would be a permanent change and was proposed prior to the current crisis.
Just over ten days ago, eagle-eyed HoL member Gordon T became one of the few people in the borough to become aware of Haringey's parking proposals which will result in the loss of resident parking. At the time he became aware, there were just three or four days remaining of the consultation period.
Thanks to Gordon posting his discovery on HoL, more people in the community became aware of the changes.
One of those community members noted a procedural failing and as a result has been able to get the Council to extend consultation period extended to this Friday. For that reason, I am writing to post an update should any residents wish to contribute to the consultation.
A full copy of the consultation is attached. In short, it concerns parking at the ends of about 50 roads across the borough (about a dozen of which are in Harringay). The proposal is to convert parking spaces which are currently available for use by both residents and visitors to visitor only spaces.
With some roads already under intense parking pressure, as last year's parking surveys showed, this seems like a retrograde step.
Over the past few days a few things have become clearer.
Firstly, there's little surprise that no one was aware of the proposals, because we've learned that not only was nothing posted online, but only one notice was put up in each of the roads affected.
Secondly, it's become clear that this proposal originates as a reaction to pressure from trader groups to release more parking for their customers.
One resident had a reply to their consultation submission that made the causal link abundantly clear. The reply sent to me in response to my submission, and received just today wasn't so clear on the causal link, but it still made it clear enough:
As you will be aware the council must look to balance the needs of the whole community, and this means both for residents and businesses. It is essential the council supports our businesses to enable them to trade, the provision of short term parking places close to these facilities is one way the council does this. It should also be noted that local businesses help to sustain a local community in the provision of local essential services.
In the context of the current crisis, this is very small beans. But since the Council are pressing ahead with their plans, I wanted to at least make people aware of what's happening, why it's happening and that you still have the opportunity to object or support the proposals. (See Para 4 of the attachment - email@example.com)
Given Haringey's supposed stand on reducing car journeys in the borough and given the evidence that car parking isn't required for a healthy high street, this seems to be an extremely strange step.
Over to you.
Mmm, pretty poor show. It’s difficult to imagine that they’re unaware of the substantial body of respectable research that says the exact opposite.
It seems they have done research this time.
They asked the traders who told them they needed more parking spots...
Anecdotal conversations I've had with potential visitors suggest that they are put off visiting Grim Lanes for shopping or the restaurants because of the volumes of traffic. In particular they would not wish to purchase any of the fruit & vegetables which are on display outside premises, because it's an "air quality area of focus" recognised as such in LBH's "Air Quality Action Plan" (AQAP). The weekends are the worst, in particular Sunday afternoons, when there are no parking restriction for anyone, visitor or resident, anyway. I stay well away at such times.
Strikes me that the 2 occasions when Green Lanes was really heaving was during the 2 Food Festivals when there was no traffic!! Didn't seem to put off the crowds then. The businesses with the aid of a part of the council are currently swimming against the tide and the same fate as befell the dinosaurs awaits them. Healthy living streets attract visitors, dying & decaying ones do not.
The evidence continues to mount of the dangers not only from CO2 for respiratory diseases, but also the micro & nano particles that lead to heart disease. It's not the mass of particles, it's the sheer number that are breathed in that causes immune systems to work overtime leading to increased incidencies of heart attacks and so forth. Another part of the council, responsible for public health & climate change issues is actively trying to cut air pollution. It would be good if they used their meagre funds in a joined up manner together rather than in opposition. One officer told me that transport (sustainable) & highways (parking do not work together. Go figure!
I'd recommend the excellent & easy to read book "The Invisible Killer" by Gary Fuller of Kings College, in particular Chapter 9, " Counting particles and the enigma of modern air pollution" to see how the evidence is building up. Less traffic & less particles could make Grim Lanes closer to it's correct historical name of Green Lanes, and attract more visitors using the excellent & varied public transport systems that already serve the high street.
On another matter, a mono cultural offering of restaurants etc., will only ever appeal to a small demographic, and who needs a motor vehicle to visit one of the multitude of jewellers? To bring in visitors, one first needs to have a diverse offering, something for everybody, not to limit the offering to a section. It's an issue of quality, not quantity. I really wonder if the people who enjoy eating & drinking along the pavements during the warmer months with the motor vehicles grinding along beside their plates of food know how unwise this is for their health.
On a lighter note, an upside from the 'lockdown' if there is such a thing, must be the improved quality of air.
At the end of the day though, these dual parking bays can already be used by visitors who wish to pay by phone. The impact will be solely felt by residents only. I'm continually minded to take my custom away because of these attitudes and I only have my 2 legs, so I consider I don't have a vested interested in this matter, but I want to breathe cleaner air. How about the council supporting residents, old & young to breathe clean air & not just businesses & their motorised clients & customers?