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City centre does not need more car parks

I WONDER what most readers would regard as Canterbury council’s “family silver”. According to a letter from Lib Dem councillors last week, it is car parks and they trumpet that “Liberal Democrats have a long history of campaigning for keeping our car parks”. They go on to accuse the council and its plan to reduce the number of parking spaces of “selling the family silver in an effort to make the books balance”. They should know from the Transport Strategy that the plan is instead part of the scheme to control congestion in the city and to restrict the impact on the city of the projected increase in traffic over the next few years.

The strategy envisages a reduction of 10 per cent in public car-parking spaces in the city but an increase in car-parking spaces at park-and-ride sites. As we all know, without bold measures congestion and pollution in the city centre could increase considerably, adversely affecting business, tourism and the health and the quality of life of residents. Other cities in the UK and across Europe are seeking to free their public spaces from congestion and pollution and instead make them bustling, vibrant, delightful, people-filled spaces, attractive to visit and shop in. We share that vision.

Jo Kidd
Canterbury District Green Party

Herne Bay Times, February 11th 2015

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