Ministers could make it easier for English councils outside London to restrict pavement parking as part of their strategy to promote walking and cycling.
However it appears that any changes are some way off. The Department for Transport (DfT) said that work is ongoing and no decisions have been made. Campaigners have urged ministers to give the issue ‘the attention it deserves’.
Clear pavements help disabled users and people with buggies
The DfT’s recently updated draft Walking and Cycling Investment Strategy says the department will work with stakeholders during the year ‘to examine the legal and financial implications of an alternative pavement parking regime and the likely impacts on local authorities’.
It points out that councils already have powers to introduce pavement parking restrictions where they consider it appropriate and says the DfT ‘has taken steps to assist them in this’.
The draft strategy says the Government ‘has issued guidance to local authorities about using Traffic Regulation Orders (TROs) to ban pavement parking and removed the requirement for an individual sign authorisation for local authorities in England (outside London)’.
Pavement parking has been banned in London since 1974.
The DfT consultation on changing the current regime will begin with a roundtable between roads minister Andrew Jones and key stakeholders to help inform its subsequent research.
A DfT spokesperson said: ‘We are currently considering the rules around pavement parking, including whether more can be done to make it easier for councils to tackle problem areas in a consistent way. Work is ongoing and no decisions have been made.’
Tom Platt, head of policy at charity Living Streets said: ‘It’s important that pavement parking stays on the Government’s agenda. Parking on footways is, at best, a nuisance and, at worst, dangerous. It forces the most vulnerable people, such as those with buggies or in wheelchairs, into the road and into oncoming traffic.
‘We think it’s about time that this issue gets the attention it deserves and we hope to continue to work with the Government to see pavement parking prohibited across England and Wales.’