Could this finally be the solution to long-running student parking ‘nightmare’?

Residents say they are having major problems because students from Suffolk One are parking on Sprite

Residents say they are having major problems because students from Suffolk One are parking on Sprites lane and Goldcrest Road. - Credit: Gregg Brown

A solution to the long-running “nightmare” of students parking on the residential streets around a Suffolk college is said to be a “real goer”.

A meeting between community leaders, highways officers and staff at Ipswich’s One college last week is reported to have resulted in a parking proposals that could end years of discontent in the streets around Pinewood.

Christopher Hudson, who represents the Belstead Brook division at Suffolk County Council, said a deal was being negotiated to provide students with cheap access to the nearby Copdock park and ride. He said the council’s highways department was prepared to offer the college a section of the park and ride to for student to use at a discounted daily rate of £1.

“I’ve managed to managed to negotiate a fixed price and it looks like a real goer,” he said.

“We are delivering a solution to end this parking nightmare.”

Students parking in the residential streets around One college, such as Wentworth Drive and Sprites Lane, has been a sore subject for many resident over recent years. People have complained of cars blocking their drives, obstructing traffic and preventing emergency vehicles gaining access.

Mr Hudson said the situation was so serious in parts of Pinewood that he feared it could result in a serious accident.

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He has been working with the residents and college to seek a solution for some time and believes the park and ride option is the best yet.

While he acknowledges some students may be put off paying to park, even at a reduced sum, Mr Hudson said he hoped to incentivise the young drivers with an “altruistic” offer.

The councillor is offering to match fund the money the students spend on parking with a donation to a local worthy cause of their choosing from his locality budget. “This could be a substantial sum of several thousand pounds,” he added.

Mr Hudson also believes the students could be encouraged to administer the parking system to give them “ownership”.

Project leaders are also looking at a “Plan B” option, involving a nearby business, which Mr Hudson said is seeking planning permission to create a car park for up to 100 students each day.

He discussed the proposals with Pinewood Parish Council on Monday and said he received a “relieved” response.