Berwick Street Market traders have suffered a further blow when their parking places have been lost due to the redevelopment scheme alongside Kemp House, despite Westminster City Council raking in an extra £12 million through parking charges and fines.
Berwick Street traders have for many years parked their vans, which are essential to bring fruit, vegetables and other goods to the market, in the area around Kemp House and Ingestre Court. But now these parking places have been lost as they are needed for the redevelopment site works and Westminster Council has not provided any replacement parking spaces for traders. This is despite the £12 million extra parking revenue.
Council officers have told Councillors:
“There will be an estimated £12m increase in car parking income during the 2016/17 financial year when compared with 2015/16. Of this increase we had budgeted for a £4m increase following changes made to how we charge for parking suspensions and increases in paid for parking charges.The breakdown of the increase in income is as follows:
- £5.7m from parking suspensions
- £3.8m from paid for parking charges
- £2.4m due to a higher than anticipated increase in Penalty Charge Notices
Whilst parking income has tended to be fairly volatile over the years, we are anticipating that we will maintain this level of income in 2017/18. “
Labour Councillor Paul Dimoldenberg, who has been working closely with Berwick Street Market traders, said:
“This is another bad blow for Berwick Street Market at a time when the Council’s privatisation plans have caused so many problems and created so much uncertainty. The redevelopment works along Berwick Street have been causing problems for a long time, reducing trade and putting off customers. Now the loss of parking will hit the market traders hard. Westminster Council is just standing by and has offered no help with parking despite making £12 million more this year and expecting the same next year. Surely the Council could make available a few parking spaces for market traders’ vans?”