Overview of the Positive Parking Strategy

Executive summary

This strategy for parking has been shaped to help support the Council deliver on its 2019 climate emergency declaration and other objectives set out in the Strategic Plan (2020-23). It presents four themes, and principles within each, that will guide decisions about parking provision, allocation, charging and control over the coming years.

Protecting the environment

Poor air quality and road congestion remain key issues for Colchester. To encourage drivers to consider other more environmentally-friendly methods of transport, so that the goal of Carbon Neutrality by 2030 can be reached, the Colchester will:
  • consider air quality, traffic congestion and availability of other modes of transport when setting the quantity, location and charge of car parking
  • ensure the policy can be consistently applied by acquiring or applying a licence scheme to all significant third party public off-street parking in the town centre
  • seek to introduce a levy on all workplace parking within the town centre
  • support car free developments and lower provision of car parking in appropriate areas

Delivering good service

Whilst tackling the environmental impacts, the Council look to deliver the best service possible. A large part of the strategic plan sets out to do this by:
  • providing clear signing to allow visitors to find appropriate, available parking more easily, and to manage the choice of routes taken to that parking
  • improving user experience by adopting new payment tariffs and channels. These systems could support new sophistications, such as promotions and caps on parking charges
  • varying the parking offered to meet different customer requirements spatially and temporally

Providing social & financial value

The strategy aims to ensure proper social and financial value is delivered to users. In order to do this, the Council will:
  • ensure parking prices take account of the full costs of providing the service and that this price is set to ensure that other, more sustainable methods of transport, remain attractive to users
  • vary charges applied to parking depending on user type. This is to take account of a user’s situation and support their needs, along with being a means to encourage certain behaviours
  • make revenues from parking available to support other transport options in order to deliver on overall objectives

Supporting wellbeing & social inclusion

The strategy will seek to make access to parking fairer, taking account of specific needs, including actions to:
  • design parking payments to make parking offers available to all
  • set and adjust Blue Badge parking provision over time based on the observed need
  • support use of the parking estate in the provision of social housing

Page last reviewed: 15 May 2023