Different park and ride trials will be considered, council says

Posted On 26 Apr 2022 at 2:57 pm

The match-day park and ride at Mill Road in Brighton – Picture by Hassocks5489 Creative Commons

Alternative park and ride schemes will still be considered following Brighton and Hove Buses’ decision to withdraw from a planned trial this summer, the council says.

The bus company told a meeting of Brighton Area Buswatch this month that it was pulling out of the trial because some of the required permissions – plus crucial signage from the A23 and A27 – were probably not going to be in place in time.

Its commercial director Nick Hill told Brighton and Hove News it hoped a solution could be found and a trial take place in the future.

Today, Brighton and Hove City Council said the bus company’s proposed scheme was always likely to run into red tape, as it was located within the South Downs National Park.

But it said it had welcomed the trial – and would be happy to consider other schemes if and when they come forward.

A council spokesperson said: “The planned trial park and ride scheme we supported at Mill Road was not a council scheme – it was put forward by Brighton and Hove Bus Company.

“The bus company has advised us that it is no longer pursuing its proposal.

“Mill Road is within the South Downs National Park. So it would always have been contingent on planning and highways approval from the South Downs National Park Authority.

“Our understanding is that approval was unlikely due to their concerns about the impact on the National Park.

“The proposal also required a number of actions from the National Highways to meet the start of any trial, including installing relevant signage on the A23 and A27 in time.

“We felt the scheme would have given the city the opportunity to assess the impact park and ride may have on car use and any changes in uptake of public transport to arrive in the city.

“It also offered a chance to better understand the implications of park and ride schemes on travel into the city, air pollution, sustainability, traffic management and car parking capacity.

“If the bus company or any other transport company wishes to propose an amended or alternative scheme, our Environment, Transport and Sustainability committee will of course consider it in the normal way.”

  1. Andrew Boag Reply

    Highly unlikely. The Mill Road proposal was originally presented to the Council over a year ago, with a view to a trial in summer 2021, so it has taken over a year to get to this stage. I can’t see the Council agreeing another site and get it up and running for this summer. This year a bus company has to give 70 days notice before starting a new service, that requirement was suspended during 2021. Early indications then were that the South Downs National Park would not object because it was south of the by-pass and shielded by trees. Mill Road has been used as a match day Park & Ride for several years so you have to wonder why the SDNP changed their position.

  2. Billy Short Reply

    As usual the council decide they can’t do something and instead they dish out a press release effectively kicking the issue down the road with promises they won’t keep.

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