Nov 012013

Parking permits are to be applied to Garthdee residents, a move which Duncan Harley describes as ‘A Scottish Labour disgrace’.

Parking in Garthdee Duncan Harley

The councillors and officials of the Granite City have seemingly decided to use the easy option of car parking to make a bit of cash.

From 1st August 2013, parking charges apply to Garthdee residents who wish to park outside their own house.

The official line reads:

“Introduction of Charge for Garthdee Resident’s Exemption Parking Permits (Zone Y). From 1st August 2013, residents who are entitled to apply for a Resident’s Exemption Parking Permit will have to pay for a permit. Any existing permits on 1st August 2013 will be honoured.

“Any resident who has an existing permit will be required to pay if they decide to renew their permit(s).
Please note: the council will no longer issue Permit Renewal Reminder letters after 31 July 2013. Permit holders must be aware of the date their permit(s) expires. Permits can be renewed from 20 days prior to its date of expiry.
The cost of a permit is as follows,     1st permit – £80.00,     2nd permit – £120.00.”

The local government regulations attached to lamp posts in the area helpfully inform residents that:

“There are 2 types of permit available. Fixed permits are only valid for one specific vehicle and cannot be transferred to any other vehicle. The vehicle registration number must be declared on the application form. The keeper of the vehicle must be resident in the household.  Flexible permits can be used on any vehicle, e.g. a visitor’s vehicle. If applying for only 1 permit, you may choose either type of permit, Fixed or Flexible.

“If applying for 2 permits, only 1 of the permits can be Flexible. Vehicles must be: A passenger or lights goods vehicle weighing less than 3.5 tonnes and designed for less than 8 passengers (driver excluded). Permits must be displayed on the vehicle windscreen and are only valid for use within the designated residents only, on street pay and display, ticket zone and voucher parking bays.

“You are not guaranteed a parking space in your zone. The maximum number of permits that an address is entitled is 2. Permits are not required for motorcycles which may be parked free of charge in any parking bay. We ask that motorcycles are parked perpendicular to the kerb (front of wheel facing the kerb).”

A reading age of at least fifteen is required to make sense of the new rules, and a fine of huge proportions awaits those who fail to comply. If you own a new BMW or a knackered Fiesta the rules are just the same. Pay up or get fined up to £60 a day for parking in your own street.

All well and good of course: if you own a car, you are liable to pay for parking in busy city streets. But outside your own house and in a residential satellite scheme three miles from the city centre?

Dame Anne Begg, who has been the MP for Aberdeen South since 1997, was contacted by a resident. Could she take up the case on behalf of the folk of Garthdee? Could she fight their corner on this issue? Could she empathise with constituents who are being bullied by Aberdeen City Council and forced to use hard-earned funds to buy a licence to park outside their homes? Seemingly she is powerless to fight the issue.

At a recent meeting in Garthdee Community Centre to discuss the issues, one 73-year-old resident pointed out that if she needed her house repaired for any reason she would now require a visitor’s permit to allow a tradesman’s van to park outside her door. If family or carers visit they too would require to use her visitor’s permit.

“Why should I pay £200 to let folk park at my door, I don’t even own a car,” she said

“what if I call the doctor and he won’t come unless I have a parking permit?”

Many residents feel that Garthdee has plenty of kerbside parking. In fact many residents are too deprived to even own a vehicle. What is the council thinking of?

Get in touch with Anne at:
01224 252704
Dame Anne Begg MP
Admiral Court,
Poynernook Road,
AB11 5QX

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  12 Responses to “Aberdeen Parking Permits To Hit Garthdee Residents”

  1. I know the Garthdee area and it is true that many elderly and disabled people live here. It is very unfair of the council to ask these people, who may have little money to live on to pay for a parking permit, in some cases as was mentioned above when they don’t even own a car. I wonder if there are many resident parking zones where Ian Wood lives.

    Also, there used to be a beaver bus (No 93) that snaked through Garthdee and then went down to Sainsbury’s and Asda, then later came back up again. It was a two way service that ran from the city centre to Peterculter three or four times a day and it was a life-line for dozens of elderly/disabled people getting their groceries. Aberdeen Council stopped subsidising this beaver bus (about a year and a half ago) and the service ceased. Many elderly people now have to walk down to the supermarket but walk back home up a steep hill and the paths that lead from Garthdee Road up to the houses are even steeper and dangerous. In bad weather such as with snow, sleet, hail and ice on the ground even the young and fit students struggle.

    • I wonder Sean if the council can be persuaded to allocate visitors passes at a vastly reduced rate to non vehicle owners. Perhaps these could be means tested to take account of low income households.

  2. Good one, Duncan, and Sean is on the nail also. My old auntie & uncle, who live in Montrose Drive, were talking about this only yesterday. They don’t run a car, but why should they have to pay for a permit so that their daughters and others can visit?

  3. For all those concerned about this issue, I will update the Voice in due course. There is a further meeting to discus the situation on 11th November in Inchgarth Community Centre. I will personally be inviting Dame Anne Begg MP and Doug Ritchie of Aberdeen Planning and Infrastructure to attend.
    Meantime, any points and views will be gratefully received.

  4. Both invited, 7.30 prompt.

  5. I agree that this charge is disgraceful and the parking permit scheme is deeply flawed. I live in a HMO, for which two permits are allowed, even though four unrelated adults live here and we all have cars. This means that two of us cannot park here during the day, so have to drive to work. ACC stated that one of the aims of the scheme was to reduce the number of commuters travelling by car – making it expensive or even impossible for workers to leave their cars at home during the day does not help this cause!

    • What’s a HMO N?

      • House of Multiple Occupancy (or something like that).

        Parking in and around Aberdeen is a nightmare. The problem is, that it doesn’t follow any sort of logical plan either. Parking permits appear to be being used as a money making scheme, as the addition of permit areas isn’t backed up by increased provision of public transport as an alternative. It should also be given its proper name, which is “parking tax”. It is a tax, which, at £6-10 per month, adds to the myriad of other compulsory taxes hidden among the monthly bills.

        Quite often, the permit is only required between 8am and 5pm and so, as N says, people are forced to take their cars to work, and not use public transport.

        I could be wrong too, but I think a tradesman can get a city-wide pass for parking in permit areas, which would mean not requiring folks to buy a visitor’s pass specifically for tradesmen visits. Might be worth checking that out before bringing it up at a meeting, better to be informed.

  6. My mum can not leave the house on her own and will have to pay for a pass for me to take her out, for the cleaner, window cleaner, nurse etc to visit. Until recently before the charges we had a pass for my car, granted even though I don’t live there but I am her main carer. My car was written off and we went to get a permit for the new one to be told by a rather rude woman No, your mum has to be on the insurance. Mum is over 80 and has never driven. She then refused to issue a generic permit even though the Garthdee area folk are, according to the “new” rules, entitled to two generic permits, before the charges,. We were then told to put mum’s disabled badge in the car when there and dismissed.
    Will the residents in Kincorth, Mastrick, Northfield and other areas similar to Garthdee also have permits enforced on them ? Or is it just the Garthdee residents being singled out to make up for the end of the uni money, the sweetener they crossed palms with to be allowed to build on a green area, it’s bad enough trying to get parked at mums with students parking in residents only areas with the vouchers from the local shop and giving us dogs abuse when we point it out to them.
    I can’t be at the meeting on 11th as I am working and my mum won’t get either, There are a lot of housebound elderly whose voices are not being listened to in this

  7. Pamela, I am in the same situation as yourself, my elderly parents live at the top end of Montrose Drive right opp. the university, it is a nightmare trying to get parked.Like yourself I was refused a fixed permit for my car, which I have had for the last 10yrs , Mum is 86 and Dad 83 and I am the one who takes them shopping etc.What really gets me angry is the fact they have had to £80 for the one permit and we can hardly get near their door for Students who have borrowed Auntie Jeans permit from the other side of Garthdee and come and park in Montrose Drive. It is my intention to be at the meeting on Monday night, I have spoken with two councillors so far and to date have not had satisfactory conclusion to this matter…

  8. Seemingly todays EPI committee rejected the case for review. Cllr Mrs Angela Taylor said it was unfortunate that the previous administration had misled the residents over the fact that they might have to pay for parking permits in the future. It is a fact, in my view, that if, as she says, the administration misled the community of the terms of the proposed Cotrolled Parking Zone when we were consulted on it, it raises serious questions about its validity.
    Unfortunate perhaps but valid?

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