Categories
Ealing and Northfield

The Southall car park question

At a scrutiny meeting last Thursday we discussed the business case for the new car park proposed in Southall, see papers here and here.

This is a massively expensive venture due to cost £5.45 million of which £127,000 has already been spent on a temporary car park at Hambrough Road and other preparatory work. There was broad agreement that Southall is congested with traffic and needs a solution to its parking pressure.

The council’s paper was hilariously patronising in places: “The characteristics of the majority Asian population, mostly relies upon the usage of the car.” Most people in west London rely on their cars if not for commuting then for much of their leisure activity at the weekend.

The scrutiny committee asked to see a business case. What they were shown in the papers was some history, a political argument and some facts that allude to demand. The main plank for the demand argument seems to be that Ealing and West Ealing combined has a higher ratio of car parking spaces compared with retail floor space than Southall. For comparison (see bottom of page 6 of main report) the Ealing/West Ealing number is 2.34 compared to 0.92 for Southall. The council’s case is that Ealing has 2.5 times as much parking as Southall. They omit the figures for office space as they would substantially redress the balance and undermine the case the council is trying to make. The second main plank of the demand argument is that the council’s Herbert Road multi-storey car park is at capacity. It is, but only on weekend afternoons, like most town centre car parks, just the same as the massive Ealing Broadway Shopping Centre car park and the whole of Kingston town centre. Overall the Herbert Road car park is only 35% occupied through the length of its charged for opening times.

Cllr Kamiljit Dhindsa, Southall Green ward, was particularly vociferous on the car park subject and spoke in favour of adding 500 spaces to Southall. The Council’s ambition is to provide 90 spaces, maybe a few more if possible, for the £5.323 million left in the pot. We are talking £60K per parking space here so let’s hope that Cllr Dhindsa doesn’t get his way! Dhindsa also felt that the price for parking in Southall was too high and that the current charges of £1.50 an hour weekdays and £2 an hour on weekends was unfair compared to charges around the £1 mark elsewhere in the Borough.

We all want parking to be easier and cheaper so Cllr Dhindsa’s aspirations are perfectly reasonable. The reality is though that we will mostly be disappointed. It is not clear why Southall should be different. The council’s demand evidence is weak.

I will write further on:

3 replies on “The Southall car park question”

I seriously feel that there should be more and reasonable car parking facilities in Southall, I am a casual visitor of Southall and would love to visit the area more regularly if there were car parking facilities available near the broadway at reasonable prices, this is a major tourist attraction and therefore a bigger car park would be ideal, I hope the council agrees to the proposal, and we see a great big carpark at Southall.

Kaur,

The council is proposing about 100 extra spaces at the same price as the Herbert Road car park. For a bargain price of £5.5 million.

It is easy to park around Southall if you are prepared to pay a modest sum that you would pay in any other town centre in England. It only gets hard on weekend afternoons and then it is probably not as bad as Kingston.

Most people want FREE parking.

although the other option is the most out of their parking

dual bay is the way, but Councillor Dheer is both hesistant and deluded to think his previous trial was deemed a failure!

Comments are closed.