Following pressure from residents, local groups, opposition councillors – pretty much everyone – Labour is quite rightly pausing and starting talking to local people. See below for press release:
Reading Borough Council Press Release
Revised proposals for the operation of two possible micro park and ride sites at Palmer Park and Clayfield Copse are being drawn up by Reading Borough Council following a period of public consultation.
The Council's Cabinet agreed earlier this month to consult on the micro park and ride proposals, aimed at reducing traffic levels in Reading town centre by encouraging commuters to park outside the town centre and continue their journeys by bus.
Final decisions will not be taken until the consultation process has been completed. However, following feedback from local sports groups and regular park users, the Council has decided to act now to amend the proposals, making it clear that if the schemes go ahead, they would only apply between Monday and Friday during the day and not at weekends.
Tony Page, the Council's Lead Member for Transport, has also instructed council officers to investigate further the capacity issues at both sites and also to indentify how to ensure that the proposed schemes contribute to the Council's sustainable transport policies, whilst not discouraging people from making use of the facilities for leisure and sporting activities or creating parking problems elsewhere. A report, setting out a variety of options for the schemes, will then be brought to the Council's Cabinet in July.
Transport officers will be making direct contact with the various users groups at the two parks over the next fortnight to ensure the options they bring forward to Cabinet take account of their views, alongside the statutory consultation, which continues until July 5.
Councillor Page said: 'Although this consultation is scheduled to run until July 5, it is already clear from the responses we have received to date that not only is there a lot of misunderstanding about what was being suggested, but that people have raised a number of issues which need to be clarified. We need to ensure these proposals if they are to work not only contribute to sustainable transport policies but at the same time continue to encourage people to make use of these important sport and leisure facilities.
'I am particularly keen that Council officers engage directly with user groups both to explain the important contribution that these schemes could make to the sustainability of our local transport systems, and to listen carefully to any concerns they have regarding their use of the parks' facilities.'
Transport officers will be making contact with users groups at both parks over the next two weeks. People can also continue to pass the Council their comments by phoning 0118 937 4832 or 0118 937 2451 and by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org