Park and Change site to reduce congestion in Exeter

A new park-and-change site near the Exeter Science Park, part of congestion-busting plans for the city, is set to be backed next week.

Devon County Council’s cabinet, when they meet next Wednesday, are recommended to approve the construction of the new £2.2m facility that will enable drivers to park on the edge of the city and switch to bikes, buses or car sharing options.

The scheme received planning approval as part of the Tithebarn Green development in October 2018 and aims to relieve pressure on Moor Lane roundabout, the A30 Honiton Road and busy city radial routes, which experience congestion at peak times.

There will be 300 parking bays, of which 16 will be for disabled people, and six dedicated to electric cars, but it will be designed to enable further expansion in the future.

There will also be secure cycle lockers, capable of storing up to 20 bicycles which will enable commuters to store their bicycles overnight, increasing the attractiveness of park and cycle, new dock for six electric bikes will be delivered, and a new footway/cycleway along the southern side of Anning Drive from the Park and Change entrance to Babbage Way will be constructed, the report of Dave Black, Head of Planning, Transportation and Environment states.

It adds: “The site will have approximately 15-minute frequency buses travelling past the site on Anning Road and on the Old Honiton Road. The Exeter and East Devon Enterprise Zone has recently funded an enhancement to the Service 56 ‘CONNexIONS’ bus service, which means that users of the Park and Change will benefit commuters working at the Lidl depot, SkyPark and Exeter Airport as well as people travelling towards the city.

“The park and change will provide secure cycle lockers and a cycle hire scheme and so is expected to have a positive impact on public health as it will encourage physical activity as part of peoples’ journeys. Many employees in the city work in sedentary jobs and this project is a great opportunity to promote active travel and enable people to lead healthier, physically active lifestyles.

“The Park and Change forms part of a package of measures, which are being delivered by the County Council as part of the successful bid for Department for Transport National Productivity Investment funding.

“Along with the cycle improvements, the electric bike-hire expansion and the Moor Lane roundabout improvements, it is intended to help relieve pressure on a critical transport node/corridor at M5 Junction 29.

“Collectively, the package of schemes will enable continued growth of housing and jobs on the eastern edge of the city.

“Specifically, the Park and Change will encourage people to switch to more sustainable, healthier modes of transport thereby minimising the negative impacts of congestion and poor air quality on Exeter’s radial corridors.”

The cabinet is recommended to approve the construction of a Park and Change site near Exeter Science Park at an estimated cost of £2,241,787.

The project is funded by £57,196 of developer contributions, £829,591 from the National Productivity Investment Fund, and £1.355m from the Enterprise Zone.

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