car parked on corner
There’s a dropped kerb under here somewhere …

The Scottish Government are consulting on improving parking in Scotland. This consultation covers a number of issues, including pavement parking (and parking that blocks dropped kerbs, etc.), enforcement of parking (currently, depending on local authority, this is the responsibility of either the council or the police, leading to inconsistent approaches), blue badge (disabled) parking, and parking and charging points for electric vehicles.

The consultation closes on Friday so, if you want to respond on any or all of these issues, time is running out.

There is a consultation paper (worth reading for the background and understanding some of the complexities of the matter) and an online survey – which, be warned, is quite a long and detailed. However, you can also respond by email directly if you prefer – go to the consultation page to find out more.

illegal parking
When parking is no longer a police priority, and councils have not taken over responsibility, this is the inevitable result

Parking is a surprisingly complex area and it’s true that there are likely to be some unintended consequences to stricter parking regulations and better enforcement. We understand that traders are likely to feel anxious about anything that might (in their minds) affect their customers. It’s worth remembering that businesses consistently overestimate how many of their customers come by car – as has been shown in study after study – and that people who shop by bike, on foot, and by public transport spend more overall than those who come by car, so making town centres more pleasant for the real big spenders will actually benefit everyone.

So, if you haven’t already, do please take the time to put in your 2p worth before Friday. POP has prepared its own response here, if you need some ideas!

Free parking?