Controversial residents parking permit scheme to go ahead in Milton Keynes next month

A controversial residents-only parking scheme is set to be implemented by the end of October, despite concerns from businesses, councillors heard.

Businesses – including property giants Rightmove – were so concerned that the Caldecotte Permit Parking Scheme would leave their employees with nowhere to park that they forced Milton Keynes Council to review the decision.

Businesses and residents are in close proximity

Businesses and residents are in close proximity

At a meeting in August, attended by around 45 members of the public, councillors reviewing the issue decided to let the scheme go ahead. But members of the Strategic Placemaking Scrutiny Sub-Committee recommended that the council should work with businesses and residents to find solutions.

The issue was discussed twice this week, at Cabinet on Tuesday, and at Scrutiny Management Committee yesterday (Wednesday).

Steve Hayes, the council’s head of transport, confirmed the parking scheme will be implemented next month. In a statement to the Cabinet he added: “It is important that the council works with the business park to consider its success and mitigate its impacts upon the community.”

He said meetings would be taking place and there were plans to create more legitimate parking spaces. They are also looking at improving public transport links, and funding a new bus stop.

Cllr Peter Geary (Cons, Olney) said that future developments must not allow such situations to happen again. His party colleague Cllr David Hopkins (Danesborough and Walton) suggested that nearby land owned by the council could be made available for parking.

Speaking on the issue again at the next day’s Scrutiny Management Committee, Cllr Geary said: “Whenever an item is called in by business you’ve got to listen and give serious consideration. It was almost called in by desperation by them; they realise how difficult it is going to be for their staff.

“There is a serious problem that has to be resolved and the decision taken was one part of solving the problem but not a complete one. The committee did not believe there was enough being done to fix the whole problem so we recommended that the Cabinet look at resolving wider issues.

“The response that came back from Cabinet I think did not go far enough but the committee has asked for a report back later in the year on how things are going so hopefully we should be able to keep the pressure up to keep things progressing along.”