The interim report on the proposed East Dulwich controlled parking zone (CPZ) is now available on the project page here: [www.southwark.gov.uk
Or direct link here: [www.southwark.gov.uk
The report in context of the overall process
This is an interim report. It is written by council officers, on the basis of the consultation responses. It is published to that local people can discuss its recommendations and make comments. The next meeting of Dulwich Community Council (2.30pm 27th April - Dulwich Library) will discuss the matter and issue its own recommendation before Cllr Livingstone - the cabinet member responsible for this area of work - makes a final decision. Everyone is welcome at the Dulwich Community Council so do come along to discuss it.
The consultation responses
The report itself highlights the high turnout in the consultation: 37%, which is a council record. It then goes onto summarise the results and make some recommendations.
The headline result is that, as expected, the majority of respondents living in the Northwest of the consultation area (around the station and hospital) support there being a CPZ, whereas the majority living elsewhere in the area oppose it.
The officer recommendations
I have made it clear from the beginning of this process that there are only three possible outcomes on the table. I summarised these back in January as such:
- Outright rejection of the proposal on the grounds of majority opposition. This was the case with the last East Dulwich consultation in 2012.
- Outright implementation of the proposal following majority support. This has happened in a number of places for instance Thorburn Square.
- Partial implementation of the proposal in a contiguous sub-area where the proposal was supported. This happened in Herne Hill.
The officer recommendation is consistent with this: it proposes that a CPZ be implemented in a subsection of the area where there is 54% support for one. This area comprises the following roads: Grove Vale, Railway Rise, Melbourne Grove, Jarvis Road, Derwent Grove, Elsie Road, Tintagel Crescent, Zenoria Street, Oxonian Street, East Dulwich Grove, Tell Grove, Matham Grove, Glengarry Road, Trossachs Road, Tarbert Road, Thorncombe Road, the East Dulwich Grove estate, Ashbourne Grove, Chesterfield Grove, Bassano Street and Blackwater Street. The rest of the consultation area - which includes the majority of the streets consulted - would not have a CPZ implemented under the officer recommendation.
For me, one of the key aspects to the decision is regarding the impact on local schools. The officer recommendation would mean that the schools which support a CPZ would be in one, and those which do not would not.
As I noted above, the officer recommendation is consistent with the pledge I have made on here: it would only implement a CPZ in the subsection of the area which supports one.
Nonetheless, I have discussed this with fellow councillors and we think there are still some aspects to the plan which merit further discussion. Two spring to mind immediately.
Question 1: size of the zone
Any Controlled Parking Zone needs to have boundaries which make sense. The officer recommendation is for a zone which is bound to the north by Grove Vale, to the west by the railway line, and to the east by Lordship Lane. These boundaries seem relatively simple and straightforward to me. However, the boundary to the south seems more arbitrary. Ashbourne Grove, Chesterfield Grove, Bassano Street and Blackwater Street are included whilst Lytcott Grove, Playfield Crescent and Colwell Road are excluded. I suspect that were the latter roads to be included then the zone would no longer have a majority in support of a CPZ so it makes sense to exclude them, but I think there is a question over whether the former four streets should be included. If the objective is to create the biggest possible CPZ whilst still maintaining a majority for it, then it makes sense to include them. But if the objective is to find a zone which pleases the maximum number of people then removing the four streets would mean that a greater number of people are living under an outcome that they supported. None of these streets returned a majority in favour of the CPZ. The same logic applies to removing the southern section of Melbourne Grove (south of East Dulwich Grove)
Moreover, I suspect that these streets are rarely used for commuter parking at the station, but often used by shoppers visiting Lordship Lane. So removing these streets might further alleviate any concerns regarding the impact on local traders. The streets left remaining in the proposed CPZ are not generally used by shoppers.
What do you think? If a CPZ goes ahead with the proposed area, should Melbourne Grove south, Ashbourne Grove, Chesterfield Grove, Bassano Street and Blackwater Street be included?
Question 2: Hours of operation
Of those living within the officer’s proposed area, 44% want the CPZ to be operational all day (8.30am to 6.30pm), compared to 27% for two hour controls and 18% for ‘Other’. This makes it the most popular option of the three. However, I assume that those who selected ‘Other’ want the zone to be operational for either less than 2 hours per day, or for more than 2 hours but less than all day. I doubt that those selecting ‘Other’ were doing so because they wanted the zone to be operational throughout the night.
If this assumption holds then it means that, while 8.30am-6.30pm is the most popular option of the three, the majority of respondents in this area would prefer it to be shorter.
What do you think? If a CPZ goes ahead with the proposed area, either with or without the streets mentioned in Question 1, should it be operational from 8.30am to 6.30pm or for a shorter period of time?
Question 3: Other comments
The two questions above were just the ones which jumped out at us. But if anyone has any further comments it would be great to hear them too.
That said, I do not think it is worth rehashing the arguments for and against a CPZ in general. I know that there are strong opinions on both sides of the debate, and finding these out was the purpose of the consultation. For me at least, the question now is how to use the information we have to decide an outcome that best meets the conflicting views and concerns of different people in the area.
James McAsh - Labour Councillor for Goose Green ward
Surgeries: 2nd and 4th Thursdays of the month at 7pm, East Dulwich Community Centre on Darrell Road
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