Council Plan Golden Mile Workplace Parking Levy
Businesses would have to pay up to £1000 per annum for their car park spaces
A proposal is being made by Hounslow Council to introduce a Workplace Parking Levy (WPL) in the Golden Mile area of Brentford. The money raised would go towards improving transport infrastructure in the area including a possible new link with the Elizabeth line.
This would mean that businesses and other organisations in the area would be required to pay an annual charge per parking space that they provide to their employees.
The scheme will be centred around the proposed Brentford Golden Mile station which, if it was ever built, would provide a direct link with Elizabeth line services from Southall. The levy would provide a revenue of £1-2 million which could be used to enable further borrowing to help fund the project, the overall cost of which would be over £500 million. The report recommending the scheme refers to the only existing WPL to be implemented so far in the UK in Nottingham in which the money raised was ring-fenced to enable a tram system to be built.
A report by SDG consultants in 2015 concluded that the existing highway network around the Golden Mile could only accommodate the equivalent of 1,200 new jobs so the Council argue that encouraging alternative means of commuting is essential.
A WPL is a charge on employers who provide workplace parking, collected and enforced by a Local Authority. All revenue generated from a WPL must be retained by the local authority and must by law be spent on transport improvements. It is paid on spaces that are regularly used by employees – spaces used by customers, visitors etc. would not pay a charge. Disabled bays for authorised blue badge holders would also be exempted. In Nottingham small employers with less than ten parking spaces are also excluded from the scheme.
The report says that there is no intention at this stage to extend the levy to other areas which would not benefit from the planned improvement in the transport network around the Golden Mile.
Three levels of charge are considered in the report, £500, £750 and £1,000 with only the later determined to provide sufficient revenue to enable investment in new transport connections.
The scheme is to go out for public consultation and at the same time Transport for London are in the process of preparing a model scheme for boroughs across London to use and are lobbying for legislation that will allow WPLs to be enforced in London.
At this stage, given the steps necessary for the scheme to be legal, 2020/21 would be the earliest date possible for the scheme in the Golden Mile.
August 10, 2018