Plans to introduce parking fees on two major roads in Reading have been unveiled.

Reading Borough Council (RBC) is set to introduce on-street pay and display charges along busy parts of Oxford Road and Wokingham Road.

The council previously agreed plans to introduce the parking fees between 8am to 8pm for a maximum stay of two hours and is now seeking approval for the charges it wants to introduce, which are as follows:

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Oxford Road: town centre to Bedford Road

50p for up to 20mins

£1.20 up to 40 mins

£1.60 for up to 1 hour

£2.20 for up to 1 hour 20 mins

£2.70 for up to 1 hour 40 mins

£3.20 for up to 2 hours

Oxford Road: Bedford Road to Grovelands Road

First 30mins free

£1.60 for up to 1 hour

£2.50 for up to 1 hour 30 mins

£3.20 for up to 2 hours

Wokingham Road local centre

First 30mins free

£1.60 for up to 1 hour

£2.50 for up to 1 hour 30 mins

£3.20 for up to 2 hours

The council says the charge for the first 20 minutes from the town centre to Bedford Road will promote local businesses whilst avoiding it becoming an extension of parking for people to visit the town centre.

While it says the high fees for longer stays will strike a balance in promoting local business whilst encouraging more sustainable localised travel for longer stays, helping the council achieve its climate emergency objectives.

The plans will be voted on by councillors at next Thursday’s (November 12) Traffic Management sub-committee.

What is the current situation?

Currently, on-street parking along the Oxford Road and Wokingham Road local centres only allows a maximum of 30 minutes stay, with no return within one hour, and is free.

But the council says this is difficult to enforce as a traffic warden is required to return after 30 minutes of the initial observation and then allow a 10-minute mandatory grace period before issuing a ticket.

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The report from RBC officers states: “It is clear the current 30-minutes parking is not long enough for most of the activities that take place.

“For example, there are many beauty shops and hair salons along the Oxford road and 30-minute parking is not long enough to allow customers to use these services.”

The 30-minute parking on the Oxford Road consequently results in “significant abuse with cars parked longer than the restriction allows”, according to officers, making it difficult for others to access businesses and services in the area.

“Despite these challenges there is a thriving economy within these two local centres and improved management of the on-street parking, with an extended parking time, will improve access to kerbside space and increase business”, officers added.

Loading bays and disabled parking bays will remain free, while disabled drivers with blue badges will be able to park in the pay and display bays for free.

There is also free parking provided at Tesco on Oxford Road and free parking as a part of resident permit schemes within side streets will stay.

The income generated from on-street parking charges is used to support the transport services offered by the council.