Here's a short explanation of the various parking related issues in Exmouth at the moment.
Please be aware that EDDC are well aware of these issues - partly through social media, partly through officers checking things in person and partly because I keep nagging them!
Car Parks - the majority of car parks in Exmouth are run by East Devon District Council. And most of the ones in the town itself are full, most of the time.
There are a number of reasons for this - in some ways it's the perfect storm.
We've had resident parking (more on that later), a few spaces taken by Wenea for EV chargers (that too) and the Winter £2 all day scheme, along with a large jump in people getting a car park permit (again partly because of resident parking). EDDC tried to work with DCC representatives around a more cohesive parking policy, and I hope this conversation can be revisited at some point, but ultimately the resident parking scheme was implemented without any thought to the impact on car parks. EDDC decided, rightly in my opinion, to maintain cheap winter fees, partly to offset car parking charge increases for the tourist season. And judging by the number of people using them, it's been a popular move.
However, now people can't park.
EDDC are considering their options, and are keen to sort this, maybe by managing demand through fees but preferably more by increasing car park capacity.
Hopefully more on this soon.
Wenea and the (non charging) EV chargers - a couple of years ago EDDC were being consistently asked by residents, holidaymakers and the government where our public use electric chargers are. Then, as part of a fully funded scheme, we were asked if we wanted some. The cost - nada, nothing, not a sausage. So it was a no brainier and we said yes. The arrangement, I later learned, would involve the charger company leasing some spaces from us. Which is why right now we can't just open the spaces. There have been large delays in connecting the chargers, as we know. This is due to the electricity grid in the area not having capacity to power high speed chargers. This isn't something that was known or forseen by EDDC when the agreement was signed. Wenea may have known, but I doubt it as it's currently costing them money and they're getting no return. Hopefully the power company can up their game soon and they'll be connected.
I completely understand the frustration of people trying to park and seeing empty spaces. It's not a good look.
Resident Parking - this scheme was finally introduced in some of the town. Those not included are now bearing the brunt of this, as are (as previously mentioned) the EDDC car parks. The scheme was supposed to be reviewed this December but I've seen nothing official. Furthermore, the December meeting that was due to discuss this has been cancelled and not rescheduled. The next one is in April. Ho hum. Any thoughts on this should be directed to Cllrs Scott and Trail at Devon County Council.
So there we have it - please email any thoughts on the car park issues and any innovative solutions to Joe.firstname.lastname@example.org
It's not perfect this year, but we're looking to learn and put it right.