Article from Stirling Observer by Warren Hardie
Changes to parking in Dunblane are to be ‘phased in’ following approval of a new plan by Stirling councillors. At a meeting of the environment and housing committee last Thursday, councillors gave the green light to a Community Parking Management Plan for Dunblane . The first phase of the plan will see the introduction of 16 town centre parking bays, as well as new drop off points outside Dunblane railway station. There will also be two ticket machines installed in the town at both the Haining and Millrow to support a new £2 parking charge between 7am and 8.30am.
Design options for improved cycle and parking infrastructure on the Perth Road were also approved. Once implemented, the plan is set to be monitored by Stirling Council over the following six months to determine whether further measures will be required. The council said these changes were the result of “extensive consultation” with Dunblane residents and an independent parking survey. Considered proposals to introduce further ‘pay and display’ parking across Dunblane town centre have not been included in this phase of the parking plan.
Convener of the environment and housing committee, Councillor Jim Thomson, said: “The community played a vital part in this process and their views helped shape the way that the new parking management plan will help benefit Dunblane. “A well-managed parking and transport system is key for any successful town, but a critical part of getting that right is being able to balance demand for parking without impacting on growth opportunities. “This plan will help manage commuter parking within the town centre, while taking into accounts the needs of businesses and those who work there.”
Chair of Dunblane Community Council David Prescott said: “We are pleased the council has listened to the community feedback and decided not to implement the major changes which they originally proposed, which would have disrupted the lives of many town centre residents and businesses.” He added: “We are particularly pleased that they have responded to our suggestions to provide much needed additional car parking spaces and that they recognise the problems caused by railway commuter parking to the life of the town.”
However, Dunblane and Bridge of Allan councillor Alastair Majury has criticised the consultation process. He said: “There were significant issues with the public consultation that took place. Most people in the community were not involved. “The plan agreed at the committee meeting is a lot different from what was originally put forward and people should be given a say before it is put in place.“The committee should have agreed to do that.”
Green councillor Alasdair Tollemache added: “Parking is an emotive subject and the exercise just completed will not please everyone. “The initial plans have been changed following the consultation and I welcome the phased approach and in any further stage we must concentrate on sustainable transport and work towards to long term solutions that concentrate upon reducing our dependency on cars .