New discount car parking plan to be trialled Lowestoft

The trial aims to address parking problems in Lowestoft Picture: Nick Butcher

The trial aims to address parking problems in Lowestoft Picture: Nick Butcher - Credit: Nick Butcher

Parking passes could be trialled in a town centre in a bid to support businesses in Lowestoft.

The pilot is currently in the design phase but aims to provide a reduced rate that will support businesses and employees, who currently face costly parking in the town.

Early details were presented to Waveney District Council’s overview and scrutiny committee on Thursday, ahead of a planned 12-month pilot.

If it proves successful, it could be rolled out to other towns in Waveney and Suffolk Coastal, which from April next year will be united as East Suffolk Council.

The council report said: “Well-managed car parking is an important aspect of the council’s management of traffic and parking in town centres.

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“The council recognises, however, that the costs of parking can be an additional burden on employees and business owners in urban areas, where free parking is limited.

“The town centre passes would be available in Lowestoft and the surrounding market towns.

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“They would be valid for a single town centre car park (unlike the long stay parking permit which is valid for all long stay car parks across the district).

“They would be valid from Monday to Friday, in order to support the majority of commercial and business users.

“Work is underway to look at the location, pricing and logistics of introducing these tickets, and we are hoping to come back to cabinet in the New Year with full details.”

It is not yet clear what the criteria for applying may be and when the pilot may be introduced if approved by Waveney’s cabinet.

A council spokesman said: “It is still at a very early stage, and if there is merit in the proposal a far more detailed plan will be developed looking at its viability, and then go before Waveney cabinet for approval.”

The proposals follow a series of concerns raised in the town, including questions from September’s full council meeting where the cabinet was asked what work was happening to manage the “traffic chaos” around Lowestoft.

Questions were also put to cabinet on whether the cost of car parks was a deterrent to people visiting the town centre, and whether free Sunday parking could be used in the run up to Christmas.

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