It is part of Exeter City Council's plans to make the city less congested and to improve the air quality
Exeter City Council want to make the city less congested and car-reliant – and have announced a new Air Quality Action Plan that aims to discourage private car use and increase use of public transport, cycling and walking.
The council’s Place Scrutiny Committee tonight approved going out for consultation on that plan – one element of it includes a possible congestion charge in the city.
But they also recommended to the executive increasing both car park tariffs and the number of pay & display parking sites from April 2018 in car parks in the city in what would be the second rise in less than 12 months.
The one-hour fee at the priciest car parks - the Guildhall, Mary Arches and John Lewis – will rise from £2.20 to £3 from April – in what would represent a 50 per cent increase in a single year.
The cost of one hour in the other central car parks, such as King William Street, Princesshay and Cathedral and Quay, would go up by even more - from £1.10 to £2.
Prices for longer stays in all car parks would increase by less, but would still be the biggest price rises for many years - two hours at Cathedral and Quay and other zone 1 and 2 car parks would rise from £2.20 to £3, with three hours going up from £3.30 to £4.
Commuter and residents' season tickets and business permits at Cathedral and Quays would also increase by up to 25 per cent and the charging period for most car parks would be upped from 8am to 6pm to 8am to 8pm.
All day charges would increase from £12 to £15 in Guildhall, Mary Arches, John Lewis car parks, from £10 to £12 for zone one car parks and £6 to £10 for zone two car parks, while annual parking permits could increase by between £25 and £300.
Steve Carnell, Service Manager Community Safety & Enforcement, told the committee the recommendations were about adopting a reasonable pricing policy to support the Council’s ambitions to reduce congestion in the city, and that the proposed new charges still compare favourably with similar cities (Bath £12.50 per day, Bristol £21.50 per day, Cambridge £25.00 per day, Plymouth £12.00 per day).
Bromhams Farm and the Turf Approach car parks are currently free, but a ‘cashless’ parking trial will implemented at these two canal-side car parks where payment options would be card or phone only.
Backing the plans, Cllr Duncan Wood said: “The increase in parking fees reflect our drive for cleaner air quality - isn’t that a good thing?”
Councillors unanimously voted to increase parking tariffs and the cost of parking permits.
Exeter City Council’s executive will now make the final decision on whether to increase both car park tariffs and the number of pay & display parking sites from April 2018.