One of my colleagues, Councillor Colm Costello, has obtained the following numbers from the Department of Transport regarding the number of licensed vehicles in Ealing. You can see that the number of vehicles on our roads has increased 15% in ten years from 1997 to 2007.
Coincidentally the following figures from our residents’ survey have just been published in Around Ealing:
It is not hard to see the relationship between Colm’s figures and the fourth and fifth concerns of Ealing residents. It is a case of my car is your problem and vice versa.
Interestingly our neighbours Richmond today announced that they would consult on charging more polluting vehicles 25% more in their car parks and less polluting ones 25% less. It sounds like a fiendishly complicated scheme where to just get the standstill price you have to pay £2.50 to log onto a website. Ealing seems to be rather more car friendly – this month you can park in our car parks for free at the weekends.
I am sure that we are right to try to help out our local businesses in the short term. In the long term we need to have a debate about where we go with cars in Ealing. The last administration used the planning system to try to force people out of their cars. CPZs make as many people unhappy as happy. I would be interested to hear your views.