Triple car park take over bid a ‘win, win situation’
NAILSEA Town Council is planning to ask North Somerset Council if it can take over control of three car parks in the town.
Councillors are keen to take over the Station Road, Link Road and Clevedon Road car parks to ensure parking in the town remains free and the authority has already set aside �50,000 to improve the amenities.
At its meeting on Wednesday, the council agreed to write to the district authority to ask if it can take control of the car parks on a 25-year lease.
The motion was suggested after North Somerset announced it was considering implementing parking charges across the district, which town councillors and traders believe would be a huge blow to Nailsea town centre.
Town council chairman Rod Lees said: “This idea of North Somerset is down to financial requirements. We understand this, but we feel the car parks will lose money if it introduces charges.
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“Less people will use them, and with the costs of putting machines in, traffic orders and enforcing it, I think the council will end up losing money.
“Our proposal is a win, win situation. North Somerset doesn’t have to put any money aside for future maintenance.
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“The community will get free car parking for the future and we will get the car parks resurfaced and looked after.
“The existing shop owners will be able to see that car parking is going to remain free and people will continue to shop here.
“Any businesses considering moving to Nailsea might put off the decision until they know what’s going to happen with the car parks, so if we get an agreement we’re likely to get more businesses coming in.”
The town council carried out a survey to find out who regularly shops in Nailsea and discovered people travel from Long Ashton, Wraxall, Failand, Backwell, Barrow Gurney, Brockley, Cleeve, Pill and Portbury.
Mr Lees added: “Nailsea is the hub as it serves a lot of outlying villages. Free parking is the whole ethos of our town and people come regularly because of it.
“We are in recession and fighting to keep as many shops open as we can.”
Mr Lees added that if car parking charges were introduced, shoppers would either park in Tesco’s free car park and do all their shopping in the supermarket or travel to Cribbs Causeway.
North Somerset Council is due to consider the proposal in January.