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Suffolk County Council defends against accusations it ‘failed’ on One college parking problems in Ipswich

PUBLISHED: 08:53 03 November 2017

Cars parked along Wentworth Drive, which residents say has worsened since the start of term at One college. Picture: CONTRIBUTED

Cars parked along Wentworth Drive, which residents say has worsened since the start of term at One college. Picture: CONTRIBUTED

Archant

A group of residents affected by a Suffolk college’s student parking problem claims it was caused by council failures – though the authority denies the accusation.

Student parking has been a concern for some people living near to One college, Ipswich. Picture: GREGG BROWN Student parking has been a concern for some people living near to One college, Ipswich. Picture: GREGG BROWN

People living near to One college, Ipswich, have been complaining about students parking on their streets, blocking driveways and preventing access, with the problem said to have worsened.

Some residents have called on One to provide student parking on site. Neighbouring organisations have been approached to offer some of their land for college use.

However, one group of residents claims the original planning documents for the college show funding had been agreed to mitigate the problem of on street parking – but not delivered.

The application acknowledged a “high probability” of students parking nearby and recommended permission only be granted if the applicant funded up to £120,000 a year for up to six years for parking controls, such as parking permits.

It said consultation should be held with the local community over parking controls.

The residents have questioned why this appeared not to have been forthcoming, asking “where has all the money gone?”.

The group also claims the application should have allocated one on site parking space for every 15 students, but that by seeking permission for a “school” rather than a “college” the applicant avoided this.

It has questioned why Suffolk County Council did not purchase a piece of land on offer from Ipswich Borough Council, which was next to the college and could have provided parking spaces.

Group spokesman Alan Cotterell, said it would have “alleviated this whole matter”.

Suffolk County Council, however, has disputed the group’s claims, saying that the term “college” is a “superficial matter” that has no effect on planning.

A spokesman added that consultation had been undertaken into parking but this had proved “inconclusive” and could not be pursued. “There was never any money sat waiting to use to fund this work,” he added. “The money to which the residents refer would have been sourced from the school if agreement had been reached on new parking measures.”

SCC added that a number of “no waiting schemes” had been put in place to deal with areas where there might be issues.

It said there had been ongoing discussion between council officers and local residents.

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