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‘Car share drivers in Islington are nicking spaces we pay huge amounts for’

PUBLISHED: 07:00 12 October 2017

After being parked outside her home for four weeks the car was then moved over the road and took up two bays for another fortnight. Picture: Alison Salmond

After being parked outside her home for four weeks the car was then moved over the road and took up two bays for another fortnight. Picture: Alison Salmond

Archant

Drivers in Islington already pay through the nose for parking permits, but now they are having to battle it out with car share vehicles that can be parked anywhere.

Alison Salmond became fed up of having a Ubeeqo car parked outside her home in Archway for more than a month this summer and complained to Islington Council.

She was told that, unlike the town hall’s own car club scheme, private car share firms’ vehicles can be left in any resident’s bay across the borough because the firms buy “universal permits” from the town hall.

Research shows that, over the last year, each car club vehicle in London has replaced an average 13.4 cars from the road. But Alison believes the system is unfair on the people who pay among the highest fees in London for permits.

She said: “This now means as residents we pay high prices for parking permits but we are having the percentage of parking bays reduced because these car hire companies can park up without time limit.

“It’s definitely an unfair system to the residents. I have been informed previously by Islington staff that there are more cars in Islington with parking permits than there are available spaces.”

Figures obtained in a Freedom of Information request last year found some drivers in Islington paid £545 for a permit, the fourth highest cost in the UK. Only Birmingham, Manchester and Edinburgh had higher.

Islington’s transport chief Cllr Claudia Webbe said: “Not everybody needs a car all of the time.

“For many residents, car sharing is a great way to make occasional use of a car, helping reduce emissions and ease traffic and parking congestion while saving money.

“In general, we have found cars from flexible car clubs don’t tend to stay in one spot for very long, as they are picked up and driven by other users.

“In this instance, this particular car wasn’t, but in general if cars are left for significant periods we are happy to contact the car club to have it moved to an area of greater need.”

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