Suffolk County Council’s Rights of Way committee met today to discuss the proposed parking restrictions within Pinewood Parish – or at least those being dealt with by the County Council. They were very unhappy with the restrictions on residential streets and suggested their deferral until Suffolk One has been up and running for some months. They did, however, suggest approval for the twenty four hour restrictions on Scrivener and Shepherd Drives, the A1071, Poplar Lane, Ward Road and Laburnum Close. They also approved the 8am to 6pm restriction on Cottingham Road.
These recommendations will now go to the Cabinet meeting on July 20th. Caroline Page, the Lib Dem councillor for Woodbridge and a member of the committee, pointed out that there was too little parking on site – this is what I and the parish council, and the vast majority of residents have been saying from the start. As an enthusiastic cyclist Caroline recognises that, although the aspiration may be that everyone comes by bus, bike or on foot, the reality will be far different.
There will be more than 2200 students and 350 staff when the college is fully operational. Yet there are only 155 car parking spaces for staff. 25% of staff are expected to arrive by means other than the car and the rest are to car share. There will be no car parking spaces for students, but there will be spaces for bikes and mopeds, as well as a drop off area for parents.
Ipswich residents are equally exercised about the parking restrictions on their streets. The consultation for that finishes tomorrow, but neither I nor the parish council have been consulted about the area they cover within Pinewood parish, which includes half of Sprites Lane and roads off Hawthorn Drive. As we are statutory consultees this surely makes their consultation invalid?
Whilst I am sure that Suffolk One will be an excellent educational facility, residents in the area are getting a very raw deal and the process of consultation on the parking restrictions has left a lot to be desired. We must now wait to see what happens at the Cabinet meeting in July.