City of Winchester Trust
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Station Approach : Report

Winchester City Council Overview and Scrutiny Committee 13 .12. 2018

The City of Winchester Trust wishes to make the following statement relating to Station Approach (item 7).

In many ways the architectural response by LDS architects is very well considered, however, the Trust believes that the decision by the Council to insist on car parking within the scheme is wrong.

In the recently published Movement Strategy

Priority one ……is to reduce city centre traffic.

There are 16,000 daily commuter car trips into Winchester city from outside. That’s 61% of all traffic.

The Movement Strategy states that commuter traffic must be addressed.

Besides extra P&R and other measures it recommends:

  • That car parking should be controlled when considering planning consents for new employment (and residential dev’t)
  • That a Workplace Parking Levy should be imposed on existing employers to discourage workers bringing in cars, so they use more sustainable transport like trains, buses, cycling, walking.

The current proposals for the Carfax site will encourage employees and others to drive in to the city. There are 124 underground car parking spaces proposed for employees and the public. The Trust believes this is wrong.

The Council can make a decision to remove the car parking, as it owns the site. It should lead by example and show that it is serious about tackling congestion and pollution.

The Trust believes the Council gives conflicting messages about car parking and traffic in the city. On the one hand it makes the right noises about tackling congestion and pollution ……. on the other it is promoting car parking at Station Approach (as it did at Bar End).

Station Approach is the most sustainable location in Winchester, accessible by train, park and ride buses, normal bus services, and it’s close to residential areas where people can walk and cycle.

If the car parking is removed from the scheme it will be cheaper to build, there will be no need for a ramp down and an underground vehicle access on Gladstone Street. This will mean a more attractive street façade.

With no vehicle access, existing traffic flows can be re-considered in the Station Approach area and the congestion and pollution in the historic residential streets will be reduced. A reduction of traffic in the area will enable a much improved pedestrian connection from the station to the city centre along Upper High Street, which the Movement Strategy promotes and the Trust supports.

The Trust believes the Council should reconsider its proposals and instruct the architects to remove the underground car parking from the Carfax design.

John Hearn on behalf of CWT