Installation of additional electric vehicle charging points could bring troublesome pavement parking to an end across Liverpool, it has been claimed.
Cars being left on the pavement has proven to be a continual major issue around the city. Selfish drivers have been seen leaving their vehicles across pathways and pedestrian areas, causing dangers and disruption for people – especially those with disabilities and parents with prams.
As the local authority looks to adopt a new approach to encourage more electric vehicle use, one opposition member suggested it could help end one of the most significant issues blighting the city.
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A new strategy is to be put to the council’s cabinet that will set out how the city hopes to transform its charging offer and decarbonise its own fleet. There are currently 16 electric vehicle charging points operated by the council and will use the new strategy to “consider the future demand for on-street vehicle charging, fast chargers and charging hubs.”
As the strategy was discussed by members of the city’s sustainable, safe and thriving neighbourhoods committee, Cllr Kris Brown, Liberal Democrat member for Gateacre and Woolton, suggested the introduction of street-based charging points could be “an opportunity to deal with pavement parking.” Officers acknowledged how the number of vehicles being left on the side of the road has been in part due to the design of streets not being designed to cope with the vast increase in cars around the city in recent decades.
For some time now Liverpool Council has promised to crack down on the issue and has been hiring more enforcement officers to fine offenders. Even more drastic action could be on the cards, however.
Discussions are being held around the possible establishment of a secure pound where the vehicles of persistent offenders could be seized and taken to.It is understood the local authority is having conversations with a number of companies who could supply staff and vehicles to carry out these duties, although talks are said to be at a very early stage.
There have also been conversations with the council's enforcement agents about potential joint action days where vehicles of persistent offenders could be seized.
Cllr Dan Barrington, cabinet member for transport and connectivity, lamented to his colleagues at the lack of enforcement powers the council still possessed. He said: “We don’t currently have the powers, they remain with the police.
“It’s a really frustrating issue for me. We’re pushing with other local authorities but not seeing much action.”