Hackney drivers fear Olympic parking restrictions could be here to stay

Furious drivers have slammed Hackney Council after discovering controversial temporary Olympic parking restrictions, which took effect in some areas from yesterday (Friday), could become permanent.

Although all affected areas will revert to normal parking rules on September 9, a statutory notice published on Monday in the council’s magazine, Hackney Today, describes the traffic order as “experimental” and goes on to say restrictions “can continue in force for a maximum of 18 months’ trial period before a permanent order is considered”.

The council, which plans to hold a consultation about new Controlled Parking Zones (CPZs) after the Games, went on to invite written objections or comments of support - but a typo in its address meant the postcode was incorrect.

Furious Andy Wager, 56, a project manager who lives in Edmeston Close, Victoria Park, blasted the council when he realised the restrictions could be here to stay.

“This directly contradicts everything we have previously been told,” he said. “Residents have been specifically informed that these temporary controls are only because of the Olympic Games and not an assessment of the requirements for a permanent controlled zone.

“I hesitate to accuse Hackney Council of attempting to bring in controls by stealth - but this order would seem to show that this is in fact the case.”

And Lower Clapton resident Richard Cohen, 62, of Mildenhall Road, said: “Why is Hackney Council sneakily changing the parking rules on the back of the Olympic CPZ?

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“Quite frankly I am appalled at the underhand way this has been introduced and I am extremely upset that Hackney Council has put people in a state of limbo regarding residents and visitors parking within the areas concerned.”

But a Hackney Council spokeswoman said: “There is nothing underhand about the use of an experimental traffic order.

“Enforcement of the Olympic virtual permit area will cease after September 9 and the temporary signage will be removed from the streets.

“We are committed to consult residents in some of the areas south of the borough about the affects of displacement parking, and this will commence after the Games finish.”

• For more information about the parking restrictions, visit www.hackney.gov.uk/Parking-during-the-Games.htm. The correct address to send objections or comments of support is: London Borough of Hackney, Keltan House, 89-115 Mare Street, London, E8 4RU.