This article appeared in the Guildford Dragon News.
Funding for park and ride in the borough for the next five years has been secured following approval of the agreement by the Guildford Borough Council (GBC) Executive.
The parking agreement with Surrey County Council means GBC will continue to provide on-street parking services in the borough and neighbouring Waverley. It also means that the Council will use its share of the surplus raised from this service in Guildford and Waverley to fund park and ride and traffic projects in the borough until 2018.
Lead Councillor for Town Centre Planning and Transport, Cllr James Palmer, said: “This is good news. Parking Management and Park and Ride are key components in our parking strategy for our busy borough and local economy.”
“As a result of detailed discussions that have gone on between borough [council] and county [council] on parking management and the Park and Ride facilities, we will have control of both services in Guildford, for the benefit of Guildford, and any surplus that is generated, and the figures show that there will be [a surplus], will be available to apply to transport projects in Guildford.
“It is also a testament to the very well run parking service that we have in this borough that we were invited to take over the parking enforcement service in Waverley. There had been a considerable deficit there but it has now been turned, through good and efficient management, into a surplus.
“20% of that surplus will be coming towards Guildford. I was advised not to mention that but I thought that I should because it is good news.”
Although standing to gain from an expected surplus in Waverley GBC will also have to bear the cost of any deficit. As previously announced, Park & Ride fares are due to increase by 40% over two years, but will be reviewed after the first year to assess the impact of the rise.
Cllr Palmer had commented before the meeting: “Park & Ride helps reduce traffic and eases congestion, it also gives direct access to the town centre for residents, shoppers, businesses and visitors. Securing funding for the next five years also benefits the local economy and environment.”
The Council, together with Surrey County Council’s Guildford Local Committee, will allocate any further remaining surplus from the on-street parking service to local highways, transport or environmental projects.