Cabinet to consider small rise in parking charges
Shropshire Council’s Cabinet will be asked to approve small increases in parking charges at their meeting next week (6 July 2022) following a public consultation into the planned changes.
Under the plans the majority of charges in Shropshire Council-run car parks are set to rise by between 10p and 20p per hour, with many car parks remaining free of charge.
The current charges were introduced between November 2018 and February 2019 and there has been no increase since. However, in that time inflation has risen significantly, as have operational costs, but the council is receiving the same level of parking income – and can no longer continue to subsidise the maintenance of car parks from other budgets.
Many other councils have raised charges annually in the same time period.
The planned fees were approved by Cabinet and full Council in February 2022 as part of the proposed fees and charges to be applied by Shropshire Council in 2022/23. The required statutory consultation has now been completed with eight objections received.
There are seven bands of car parks and on-street parking areas managed by Shropshire Council, with bands 1 to 6 currently being chargeable, and band 7 being free.
The existing and proposed pricing levels for each band are shown below. Band 1 is on-street parking in Shrewsbury.
Hourly charges (current/proposed) by car park band
Band 1 – current £2.40; proposed £2.80
Band 2 – current £1.80; proposed £2.00
Band 3 – current £1.00; proposed £1.20
Band 4 – current – 70p; proposed 80p
Band 5 – current – 50p; proposed 60p
Band 6 – current – 30p; proposed 40p
Dean Carroll, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member for highways, said
“An increase in the rate of inflation and the cost of managing and maintaining our car parks and on-street parking areas means that we are proposing small increases to some of our parking charges.
“This will be the first increase in parking charges since the existing fees were introduced more than three years ago.
“The majority of increases are small – only 10p an hour for most car parks – with a rise of just 20p per hour in a small number of others.
“However, even with these changes many car parks will continue to be free, and many will cost just 40p an hour. And even with a small increase our prices will continue to compare favourably with many other parts of the country.
“It’s also worth highlighting that the 15 minutes’ pop and shop period will continue to apply.”
By law, any surplus money Shropshire Council receives from car parking over and above the cost of providing and administering it must be used for the benefit of road users.
Any surplus generated from these proposals would be put towards improvements to car parks and any further surplus money would be used to fund public transport services, road improvements projects and environmental improvement.
1. A full list of car parks and on-street areas within each band allocation is shown in appendix 1 of the Cabinet report and full details of proposed increases for weekly tickets, season tickets and concessions for each carpark are shown in appendix 2.
2. The proposed level of fees and charges to be applied by Shropshire Council in 2022/23 was approved by Cabinet on 16 February 2022 and subsequently by Full Council on 24 February 2022 and included increases to all parking fees for on and off-street parking across the county.
3. Any variation of charges for car parking are required to be laid down in a Traffic Resgulation Order (TRO) before they can be implemented. Before making such an order statutory consultation must be undertaken and due consideration given to any objections received. The required statutory consultation was undertaken between 24 March and 20 May 2022. A total of 18 comments were received during the consultation and included one comment in support of the proposals and eight objections. These are outlined in Appendix 3 of the report.
4. In addition to the linear hourly charges, specified car parks also offer:
• Discounted weekly tickets
• 3-monthly, 6-monthly and 12-monthly season tickets
• Residents parking permits
• Tariffs for HGV parking
• Free coach parking