Parking studies will be taking place in Northumberland’s market towns over the summer to help develop options for future parking needs in the county.
Concerns about parking capacity are regularly raised with the county council and the new administration is working to get a clearer picture of capacity and usage of car parks.
A study is already under way in Berwick and further studies will be carried out over the next two months in the market towns of Hexham, Morpeth and Alnwick, with the final reports being received by the council in November.
Motorists and car-park users may see traffic surveys taking place but there won’t be any disruption for drivers. The people undertaking the studies will be carrying appropriate identification.
Coun Glen Sanderson, Cabinet member for Environment and Local Services, said: “Despite the introduction of free parking some years ago, communities are often telling us that a lack of parking capacity is having a negative effect on their local economy and the sustainability of their towns.
“We’re listening to these concerns and as a first step have commissioned a study to investigate the current car-parking situation within each of the four main market towns where parking capacity has been identified as a key issue.
“This will establish current patterns of use and enable us to factor in the future demand for car-parking spaces so that we can fully understand what improvements are required now and in the future and look at what’s needed in terms of any new car-parking sites.
“Ultimately we want all our communities to prosper and have the right balance of sustainable parking for residents, visitors and businesses and this is the first step in making that happen.”