Hilly Fields CPZ proposed

Lewisham's neverendum on CPZ's continues. This time, the Council has proposed a zone that covers the back streets of Ladywell and a patch of the Brockley Conservation Area that runs from Hilly Fields to Lewisham Way down Tressillian Road.

Mike writes:

"Lewisham Council are consulting yet again for a Ladywell CPZ extension, calling it the 'Ladywell Study Area'. It seems extensive too. We are one road outside one of the 2 areas and knew nothing of it until we saw a sign on a lamp post today."

Another BCer Jane adds:

"I'd be interested to hear what other people think. I think it’s crazy. Once we have that one it will spread across the whole area."

The arguments for and against CPZs are well rehearsed. They promise to make it easier for locals to park, but cost money and faff for local residents. They risk harming local small businesses, but also could reduce local traffic as fewer chancers from outside the area look for inner London parking spots.

Brockley Central proposes five tests for parking zone membership:

1. Does it solve a significant problem?

No one has the divine right to park outside their house. Even people with young kids or heavy bags (I have had both in my life). Most of the time, most people can park within a stone's throw of their front door. For those with disabilities, disabled bays are an option. Do we really need to inconvenience an entire area just because a few people have to walk a few yards sometimes? Are the Brockley roads covered by this scheme really that bad?

2. Could it have negative consequences for those outside the zone?

Time and again, CPZ's create problems on their borders for people just outside the zone. The Council's attitude seems to be that this is an appropriate punishment for those who have the impudence to vote against one in their area and the solution offered is more CPZ, and so the inexorable expansion continues. If we're going to have these things, why not go the whole hog and make the whole of SE4 a CPZ? That is the unspoken question in the consultation.

3. Would it be properly enforced?

The galling thing is that we already have plenty of parking restrictions that are ignored by rogue traders and the anti-social because the Council doesn't enforce existing rules. We have a French coach company regularly parking across public rights of way, with impunity. Without proper enforcement, this is just a tax on the law abiding.

4. Is the cost and hassle worth it?

Taking all this into account, does the cost-benefit analysis work for residents? It's not just the money, it's also one more bit of admin to deal with, compounded when friends come to visit.

5. Are there bigger priorities?

EV charge points and car club bays are in short supply. What is being done to encourage greener forms of car-use? Do we need more short-stay bays to support local businesses? Will residential bays diminish the opportunity to address these challenges.

Click here for the online consultation.