Revealed: The rising cost of permit parking in Norwich


A RESIDENT'S PARKING ZONE SIGN. - Credit: Eastern Counties Newspapers

The rising cost of parking outside your own home has been revealed, with prices of Norwich's controlled parking zone permits increasing by up to 60% in just five years.

The revenue collected by Norwich City Council from issuing residents' permits has also risen, from £273,080 in 2008-09 to £405,150.50 in 2013-14.

The council argues that its permit parking scheme is still one of the cheapest in the country, and the rise in prices has been needed to meet huge shortfalls in the cost of operating the scheme.

The controlled parking zones are in residential areas near to the city centre and are designed to stop motorists and commuters from parking in these streets and leaving no room for residents' own vehicles.

Permits can be bought for six, 12 or 18 months at a time, and there are different prices based on a vehicle's length.

Shortest cars are the cheapest, and their permits have risen from £11 to £14.50 for six months and from £20 to £23.50 for 18 months, from 2008-09 to 2012-13.

Permits for medium-length cars and visitors' permits rose by £14 to £20.50 for six months and from £30 to £41.50 for 18 months over the same period.

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The largest increases have been for long vehicles, whose permits rose from £18 to £28 for six months and from £40 to £64 for 18 months.

Business permits in controlled parking zones have also risen, from £100 for 12 months in 2008-09 to £130 now.

The number of residential permits being issued has increased from 12,573 paid-for and 4,449 free permits in 2008-09 to 12,989 paid-for and 4,846 free in 2013-14.

One permit holder, Scott Lambert who lives in Spencer Street, said: 'It just seems to be another tax on the motorist. I think they have got quite extortionate.'

A spokesman for Norwich City Council said: 'Our parking permits for residents and businesses are among the cheapest in the country - ranging from £19 and £46 per year. Norwich is a regional centre so it's vitally important we prevent commuters causing congestion in the city and keep spaces open for people who live and work here.

'We have made small increases to charges and reduced our own costs in order to offset huge shortfalls.

'The deficit for 2012-13 was more than £76,000 and only this year have we managed to break even. Any surplus in the future will be reinvested in our transport schemes, including any new permit zones and maintaining the current ones.'