Under plans to help boost high Streets motorists have been allowed to park free of charge on double yellow lines for up to 15 minutes. This grace period will be extended to drivers in England if the need to do some quick shopping.
The plan has been widely received by the conservatives, but the Liberal Democrats have put up some resistance. Councils have been accused of using parking fines as cash cows, a claim which they refute.
Unless stated, parking on double yellow lines is not allowed for vehicles other than those making commercial pick-ups and drop-offs, emergency vehicles and blue badge holders.
In some places one can park for up to 30 minutes in these zones. Conservatives feel that the move will boost the businesses along the yellow lines. A 2011 review of the future suggested reducing the cost of parking in the City Centre.
The communities’ secretary, Eric Pickles, is said to have commented that one of the reasons why High Street businesses were struggling was due to the over-aggressive parking enforcement.
People will be more likely to go out of town to do their shopping or buy online, instead of going into the towns where they may pay high fines for parking violations. Eric Pickles says that this had to come to an end.
New guidelines will be issued before the General Elections, by the Conservative Party, to encourage the councils to give a grace period to drivers for between 5 and 15 minutes on the double yellow lines.
According to the Local Government Association, which comprises of over 300 councils in the UK and Wales, double yellow lines keep people safe while at the same time freeing traffic movement. This was the preferred way of getting people to visit high streets. It would be costly and impractical to monitor a 15 minute parking period.