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Author Topic: Employer / Workplace Parking Levy - what do you think?  (Read 1058 times)
grahame
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« on: November 23, 2018, 11:06:20 pm »

Employer / Workplace Parking Levies are in place in Nottingham ( [[here]] ) ... and there are other proposals such as Hounslow and Glasgow and Cambridge.

Explaining the Nottingham Scheme (at the link above):

Quote
A Workplace Parking Levy (WPL) is a charge on employers who provide workplace parking, a type of congestion charging scheme that has been introduced in Nottingham.

Nottingham City Council has introduced a WPL to tackle problems associated with traffic congestion, by both providing funding for major transport infrastructure initiatives and by acting as an incentive for employers to manage their workplace parking provision.

Money raised from the WPL goes towards NET Phase Two (the extensions to the existing tram system), the redevelopment of Nottingham Rail Station and also supports the popular Link bus network.

Employers, rather than employees, are responsible for paying any WPL charge, although employers can choose to reclaim part or all of the cost of the WPL from their employees.

Would these be a good idea / should they be considered for Bath, for Bristol, for Exeter, for Plymouth, for Reading or Slough or Yeovil?
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ellendune
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« Reply #1 on: November 23, 2018, 11:19:58 pm »

The deal would have to be that the local authority actually deliver a good public transport service. Nottingham did pretty well before they made the levy and they used it to make it better.  I don't know a local authority around here that is anywhere near as good. 
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Lee
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« Reply #2 on: November 24, 2018, 02:58:50 am »

Nottingham City Council are also in the rare position for a local authority of being the majority shareholders in the local municipal bus operator, Nottingham City Transport. In theory, this could allow them to more directly funnel WPL proceeds into local bus services, as long as it didn't fall foul of competition law.

This model could also be put in place somewhere like Bristol if, as has been mooted, the powers that be used recent changes in legislation to introduce Bus Franchising. However, given the predilection in that part of the world to talk about making bold transport moves rather than actually making them, one has to have one's doubts.
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grahame
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« Reply #3 on: November 24, 2018, 05:35:44 am »

[This] model could also be put in place somewhere like Bristol if, as has been mooted, the powers that be used recent changes in legislation to introduce Bus Franchising. However, given the predilection in that part of the world to talk about making bold transport moves rather than actually making them, one has to have one's doubts.

Bristol has a major congestion problem at the moment. The network of around 20 railway stations is served by a too-infrequent service for the most part, with overcrowding and reliability issues and significant gaps in connectivity and holes where there is no viable rail transport.  The bus network - whoever runs it under whatever governance - is rendered un-reliable by that congestion and until something is done (or something happens) to alleviate that congestion or its effects, it will remain unreliable ... and requiring lots of funding for extra and standby vehicles and staff to even put a dent in the problem.  I understand that the road works near Temple Meads are scheduled for completion in 2020 ...

It would be a shame if a parking place levy were to be introduced and used merely to buy the sticking plaster of more vehicles and staff on a route rather than taking steps that made the route (or modified routes) faster, better connected across operators and modes, and generally more attractive and less a distress purchase.

Calculations of the money raised by a workplace parking levy are interesting.   Take Aztec West, where there are said to be 7,000 employees.  How many parking spaces?  I would be surprised is it were less than 5000. At the Nottingham rate of 400 per space per annum, you're looking at 2 million a year of income which would be a not insignificant sum when used towards funding of an Aztec West station - especially were that to be funded in the way that's being talked about for new stations at present with an element of the ticket price for the next 30 years being paid to a none-state funding (and building) setup.
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Lee
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« Reply #4 on: November 24, 2018, 07:08:52 am »

To be fair grahame, you've cut off the part of my post that gave context to the quote you used. I'm not suggesting that WPL could only be used towards improving bus services under Bus Franchising, merely that this is one thing it could be used for.
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Adrian
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« Reply #5 on: November 24, 2018, 07:43:45 am »

Calculations of the money raised by a workplace parking levy are interesting.   Take Aztec West, where there are said to be 7,000 employees.  How many parking spaces?  I would be surprised is it were less than 5000. At the Nottingham rate of 400 per space per annum, you're looking at 2 million a year of income which would be a not insignificant sum when used towards funding of an Aztec West station - especially were that to be funded in the way that's being talked about for new stations at present with an element of the ticket price for the next 30 years being paid to a none-state funding (and building) setup.

As already said, there does need to be reasonable public transport available before the charging scheme starts so that employees have a choice about how they get to work.  Aztec West does nowadays have a bus service, but it's pretty limited.  I think most employers / employees there would be less than impressed with paying a levy for a train station that will open a couple of years later.  And a proper Aztec West station would need to be underground - so not something that could be built in a hurry.

Maybe the way to introduce a levy is to start it at a very nominal level to help pay for some targeted extra bus services and train services, then develop it into a grander scheme after people have got used to the concept.
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grahame
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« Reply #6 on: November 24, 2018, 07:54:08 am »

To be fair grahame, you've cut off the part of my post that gave context to the quote you used. I'm not suggesting that WPL could only be used towards improving bus services under Bus Franchising, merely that this is one thing it could be used for.

Total agree Lee - Sorry - I usually try to avoid overquoting in this case my have lost important surround.
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Lee
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« Reply #7 on: November 24, 2018, 08:13:38 am »

Calculations of the money raised by a workplace parking levy are interesting.   Take Aztec West, where there are said to be 7,000 employees.  How many parking spaces?  I would be surprised is it were less than 5000. At the Nottingham rate of 400 per space per annum, you're looking at 2 million a year of income which would be a not insignificant sum when used towards funding of an Aztec West station - especially were that to be funded in the way that's being talked about for new stations at present with an element of the ticket price for the next 30 years being paid to a none-state funding (and building) setup.

As already said, there does need to be reasonable public transport available before the charging scheme starts so that employees have a choice about how they get to work.  Aztec West does nowadays have a bus service, but it's pretty limited.  I think most employers / employees there would be less than impressed with paying a levy for a train station that will open a couple of years later.  And a proper Aztec West station would need to be underground - so not something that could be built in a hurry.

Maybe the way to introduce a levy is to start it at a very nominal level to help pay for some targeted extra bus services and train services, then develop it into a grander scheme after people have got used to the concept.

I find myself half-agreeing, half-disagreeing with your post. I agree that there needs to be at least a reasonable level of public transport available before the charging scheme starts - Nottingham already had an multi-award-winning municipal bus operator and a tram system prior to introducing their WPL, which is obviously rather different from the current situation in Bristol. For that reason it might indeed be best to start with baby steps as you suggest

I disagree that a "proper" Aztec West station would need to be underground though - both the SEWWEB alternatives for the location are above ground.
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« Reply #8 on: November 24, 2018, 11:48:04 am »

I agree with the idea of a workplace parking levy, provided that the proceeds are actually put towards public transport, and that the levy does not become just another tax.

And also with the proviso that it should be spent on actual physical improvements that can be seen, and not simply wasted on another round of studies, reviews, and consultations.

More buses, yes.
Better buses, yes
Extra train services, yes.
New train station, yes.

Studies into monorails, hydrogen power, maglev and the like, no.
Studies into newts and bats, no.
Studies into the impact on diversity of extra buses, no.
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Red Squirrel
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« Reply #9 on: November 24, 2018, 01:17:31 pm »


Bristol has a major congestion problem at the moment.


In a Balkanised area like the West of England Combined Authoriiy's zone of influence, we have to be clear what we mean by 'Bristol'. I know this is grandmother and eggs, but a significant portion of the City of Bristol's congestion problems originate in South Gloucestershire. It would be helpful, perhaps, if these sibling authorities recognised that this congestion is (for fear of paraphrasing Tim Bowles) a measure of a successful economy and sought to address it together, but maybe fighting is easier and more fun. Meanwhile, South Glos keeps building bigger roads to funnel its car-borne commuters into Bristol, and Bristol makes it harder and harder for them to park when they get there...


The bus network - whoever runs it under whatever governance - is rendered un-reliable by that congestion and until something is done (or something happens) to alleviate that congestion or its effects, it will remain unreliable ...


Isn't it the case that there isn't much that can be done to ease road congestion, short of tanking the economy? Where MetroBus really falls down is in its premise that there is some middle way between fiddling about with bits of bus lane, and spending billions on a proper metro system, at least some of which can only be underground. Even this wouldn't solve road congestion - but it would make it a lot easier to get around for those who had the wit to use it.


I understand that the road works near Temple Meads are scheduled for completion in 2020 ...


Near enough: August 2019 according to this


It would be a shame if a parking place levy were to be introduced and used merely to buy the sticking plaster of more vehicles and staff on a route rather than taking steps that made the route (or modified routes) faster, better connected across operators and modes, and generally more attractive and less a distress purchase.

Calculations of the money raised by a workplace parking levy are interesting.   Take Aztec West, where there are said to be 7,000 employees.  How many parking spaces?  I would be surprised is it were less than 5000. At the Nottingham rate of 400 per space per annum, you're looking at 2 million a year of income which would be a not insignificant sum when used towards funding of an Aztec West station - especially were that to be funded in the way that's being talked about for new stations at present with an element of the ticket price for the next 30 years being paid to a none-state funding (and building) setup.

This is the crux of the biscuit: Successful city regions are very good places to invest, and somewhere like Greater Bristol ought to be able to raise the billions of pounds of long-term investment it requires to build the metro which, self-evidently to my mind, it needs. Stirring in WPLs presumably helps make the point that the region is good for the money. But Greater Bristol doesn't exist; even the name can't be used without someone insisting it is changed to something more vague and less contentious. The problem is political; for whatever reason local government has been organised to limit the influence of the City of Bristol over its suburbs and satellites. How do you solve this? Beats me!

Edit: I was trying to be sensible and get Bounder's name right, but failed...
« Last Edit: November 24, 2018, 05:31:46 pm by Red Squirrel » Logged
CyclingSid
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« Reply #10 on: November 24, 2018, 05:26:46 pm »

In the case of Reading there was a council agenda item earlier in the year to discuss WPL and Congestion Charge. The driver for this is air pollution, especially around Cemetery Junction (the major Air Quality Management Area in the town), also the driver for the East Reading MRT.

Searching the council website this discussion happens about every two years, with not much to show so far? The attraction for councils is that the money from both type of schemes goes to the council (much needed by RBC). The downside is a system where a third of the councillors are elected every year which means there is little time for the electorate to "forget" unpopular decisions.
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