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Norbury Park Car Park Charges Failure

March 27, 2019 9:08 AM

Norbury Car ParkThe County Council admitted in its Cabinet meeting, on the 26th March 2019, that the car park charges introduced last year at the Norbury Park car parks has resulted in substantially fewer vehicles being parked in the car parks than anticipated.

This admission came as Liberal Democrat County Councillor Hazel Watson (Dorking Hills) questioned the Cabinet Member responsible for introducing the charges at the Cabinet Meeting held at County Hall.

In response to Hazel Watson's questioning, the Cabinet Member stated that the business plan assumes that 35,075 cars would park in for the Fetcham Roundabout Car Park but that only 5,057 vehicles had parked in the car park in the period October to December 2018.

He then sought to justify this shortfall in anticipated usage as being "caused by regular users choosing to park elsewhere around Norbury Park and displacement of people who were parking all day in Fetcham Roundabout Car Park."

Hazel Watson responded saying: "The justification for introducing car parking charges at Norbury Park was to raise more income to fund countryside maintenance at Norbury Park.

"The reality is that the expected numbers of vehicles using the car parks is not being achieved.

"This means that the expected level of income will also not be achieved and that the money, which is supposed to enable spending on countryside maintenance, will not exist."

Hazel Watson continued, "This shortfall in vehicles parking in the Norbury Park car parks is so significant that it calls into question the whole business case for introducing car park charges at Norbury Park.

"Quite simply, it appears that not only will there be little funding available to spend on countryside maintenance but that money spent on the infrastructure required to levy the charges will not be recovered."

Hazel Watson concluded, "This project is a complete failure. The additional income for Norbury Park is not being achieved as vehicles are parking on residential roads instead of the car parks.

"It is a lose-lose scheme which has not been properly thought through. It is time for the County Council to admit failure and to withdraw the car park charges at Norbury Park."