The City of London Corporation has drafted new parking rules that would see parking so tight that drivers would struggle to find their way in, eliminating even the ability to park by the side of the road or car park. A survey of users by London transport body TfL found that in 90 percent of cases, drivers would find it impossible to find a space, potentially leaving them stuck in gridlock. In preparation for the incursion of illegal car parkers onto the street, drivers in the British capital are being issued with letterbox stickers to warn people of impending road closures.
The introduction of the blanket curfews is expected to occur in London’s trendy areas of Hoxton, Shoreditch and the City, where many of London’s top restaurants are located. The new rules would make it a criminal offense to park where there is not a right of way, meaning that illegal parking will carry a fine of up to £80.
Under the proposals, a right of way usually involves giving the police and taxi drivers a clear path in and out of the area. With the proposed new rules, the street will be closed off to cars unless drivers can convince their neighbors that they have a right of way.
According to the London Evening Standard, which obtained the letterbox stickers ahead of the new rules’ rollout, pedestrians would be the only ones able to park in the left-hand lane unless their cabbie friend is willing to charge them extra to park there. On busy streets, a right of way would be reserved for emergency vehicles. The plans, which have been the subject of intense debate, sparked a protest earlier this week by Uber drivers who said that they were being penalized for providing easy access to the capital.
“This proposal is a ban on mobility and accessibility,” says a representative of the group, Erin Hooper, “This is an enormous white elephant in the south London area.”
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Protesters took to Facebook to express their displeasure with the new rules, with Jane Sissons dismissing them as “the unacceptable face of a state that couldn’t lift a finger in my hour of need” and “completely pointless.”