BCP Council: Darryl Howells can report that late last night (5th January 2021), the Full Council resolved to adopt the new Parking Standards SPD, that we previously reported 3 weeks ago.

The adoption of the new SPD supersedes the Council’s previous documents namely Poole’s Parking & Highway Layout in Development SPD (2011); Bournemouth’s Parking SPD (2014); and Christchurch’s use of the former Dorset Council’s Residential Car Parking Study (2011).

The SPD will harmonise parking requirements across the conurbation and encourage developments to come forward with significantly lesser car parking than currently required.  Having read the adopted SPD, we can advise that some of the key changes to be aware of include:

  • There are zonal areas (A, B, C & D) and depending on your development, the car parking provision varies for example, any residential development in zone A (town centres) requires zero car parking.  Flats in zone B (suburban areas such as Boscombe or Parkstone), the provision is either zero or 1; houses being 1 space.  In zone D, then parking provision is 1 space per flat or 2 spaces if a dwelling comprises 3 bedrooms.
  • Minimum size of a car parking space is now 2.6m x 4.8m.  If a space is positioned parallel to a wall or other means of enclosure that a gap of 0.5m minimum is required to enable door opening.
  • Standard size for a garage is now 3.3m x 7.0m, and the garage forecourt space is changes to 2.6m x 5.3m.
  • All parking courts should be landscaped, carefully lit, limited in size and well overlooked for security purposes. Parking directly adjacent to living accommodation is not acceptable. Defensible space should be allowed between parking and circulation spaces, as well as the windows of living accommodation.
  • Accessway to cycle storage should be 2m wide, with an absolute minimum of 1.5m accepted for a length no more than 10m expected where there are adjoining buildings or landscaping.   Standardised cycle storage will be expected.
  • In all new developments, provision for electric vehicle charging will be required. Conversions or change of use will be assessed on a case by case approach.
  • Where developments are provided with very low or zero parking provision, it may be necessary to ensure that future residents do not have access to resident permits. However, special consideration is available for those in specific criteria such as disabled users. This is secured via a legal agreement as part of the planning application.

If you have a site, and you want to know how best to maximise its potential whilst providing sufficient parking to meet the SPD; or have a previous scheme that was refused planning permission and one of the objections was lack of car parking, then speak to one of our planning consultants as other planning policies have changed and therefore your development might now be policy compliant.