Zone J Parking campaign

The better and less oppressive scheme the Council could have offered, but didn’t: 'Permit holder only/Shared bays'

What does it mean?

Other Central London boroughs have Permit Holder only bays, sometimes referred to as Resident's bays, as do countless other local authorities, throughout the country. Hammersmith and Fulham should have them too, but presently have scarcely any.

Resident permit holders only sign

In Permit Holder only bays only residents and those with 'business permits' are allowed to park during controlled hours, i.e. the hours displayed. The controlled hours for these bays are commonly from 9.00am to 8.00pm or 9.00pm or even later, up to seven days a week.

Hammersmith and Fulham have mainly Shared bays. Shared bays are available both to permit holders and those who pay to park. The controlled hours for these bays are usually much shorter than those for Permit holder only bays, e.g. 9.00am to 5.00-6.00pm.

What are the advantages of Permit holder only bays in addition to Shared bays?

There are obvious and immediate advantages:

  • it provides effective protection for residents during controlled hours, which often stretch well into the evening, as no one else can park in the bays reserved for them
  • at the same time residents can park free of charge in the Shared bays, so all bays are open to them.
  • residents gain in another way, because their visitors can park free in the evenings and during weekends, saving them inconvenience and expense
  • it helps the local community too, because those visiting places of worship and local businesses, outside controlled hours, can also park for free.

There are also less obvious and longer-term advantages:

  • in Zone J, the demand for parking varies sharply from street to street; a mix of ‘permit only’ and ‘shared bays’ provides much more flexibility in meeting the needs of residents in different streets; more ‘permit-only’ bays can be provided in those streets near the Uxbridge Road where parking is most difficult, and fewer, where parking is easier: in a few streets the proportion of ‘permit-only’ bays could be as high as 70 per cent.
  • just as importantly, both the proportion of the two types of bay and even their control hours can be kept under constant review and ‘tweaked’ to deal with any weaknesses in the initial design of the scheme or subsequently emerge over time.
Indeed the advantages of such a scheme are so great that many traffic engineers now think the Hammersmith and Fulham approach – of having only shared bays – is now years out of date. One senior parking traffic engineer in another central London borough has even described such provision, in this day and age, as “bizarre”.
Zone J

What is being suggested for Zone J and Zone JJ?

It is proposed that Zone J and Zone JJ be re-united into one controlled Zone J, just as before, and that a varying proportion of 'Permit holder only' bays be introduced in every street.

These bays should have controlled hours 9.00 am to 9.00pm seven days a week, although they could, perhaps, commence later, on Sundays.

Near the Uxbridge Road, where residents have difficulty in finding parking places, more Permit holder only bays should be provided. Further away from the Uxbridge Road, where there is less parking stress, fewer would be needed.

The rest of the existing parking bays should remain as 'Shared bays' throughout Zone J with the same, or much the same, controlled hours as before, i.e. 9.00 am to 5.00 pm five days a week.

Just as at present, residents would be able to park in these 'Shared bays', at any time, free of charge.

It would be up to the Council to determine the number and placing of the Permit holder only bays. In some streets, a high proportion will be required, to provide sufficient protection for residents.

The number of Permit holder only bays would need to be kept under review.

Advantages and disadvantages

While parking would become easier for residents, it would become a little more difficult for those visiting Zone J. But visitors would enjoy the big advantage of still being able to park free of charge in the evenings and at weekends. This would far outweigh any disadvantage.

It would help everybody and protect our community.