Author Topic: SBC losing money on its car parks  (Read 9228 times)

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Offline the gorgon

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SBC losing money on its car parks
« on: January 10, 2013, 05:20:31 PM »
SBC is failing to make money from parking fees in its car parks.

http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/cars/article-2259588/How-did-Council-make-parking-fees-2011-12.html?ito=feeds-newsxml

2010/11 £1.4million lost (or ~3.5 WiFis)
2011/12 £470,000 lost (or ~1 WiFi)

I bet that doesn't even include the cost of building the new town centre car park



Offline Richard Symonds

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Re: SBC losing money on its car parks
« Reply #1 on: January 10, 2013, 05:48:40 PM »
SBC is failing to make money from parking fees in its car parks.

http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/cars/article-2259588/How-did-Council-make-parking-fees-2011-12.html?ito=feeds-newsxml

2010/11 £1.4million lost (or ~3.5 WiFis)
2011/12 £470,000 lost (or ~1 WiFi)

I bet that doesn't even include the cost of building the new town centre car park


So why not waste another £15m on a new car park that is not required!!

How on earth can this lot hope to balance the books?

Unbelievable

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Offline Muggins

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Re: SBC losing money on its car parks
« Reply #2 on: January 10, 2013, 06:27:21 PM »
I think, maybe, just maybe mind, that the staff have been asked to look for savings...............now stand by and watch them look at each other to find those savings.

Where's our sword fighting smileys? 
Oi! Listen mush. Old eyes, remember? I’ve been around the block a few times. More than a few. They’ve knocked down the blocks I’ve been around and rebuilt them as bigger blocks. Super blocks. And I’ve been round them as well.  The Doctor (Night Terrors)

Offline the gorgon

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Re: SBC losing money on its car parks
« Reply #3 on: January 10, 2013, 06:43:43 PM »
So why not waste another £15m on a new car park that is not required!!

How on earth can this lot hope to balance the books?

Unbelievable

I've often thought that this lot are pursuing a slash and burn policy, so that when they do eventually lose power they'll leave the finances in such a mess that it'll be also impossible to fix (from they hope to capitalise). But that assumes they have some ability for guile and cunning.

The alternative is that they're chuffing idiots and they believe that their harebrained schemes will work.  :santa_shocked:

Offline Outoftowner

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Re: SBC losing money on its car parks
« Reply #4 on: January 10, 2013, 06:56:59 PM »
As the loss has dropped from 3.5 Wi-Fis to 1 Wi-Fi in one year there can only be two explanations:

1/ That many more people are paying to use the car parks or
2/ That the employees have already begun getting rid of one another.

I don't think that the level of town centre"vibrancy" has gone up in the last year to increase the take in the car parks, so therefore the answer must be; 2/ That the employees have already begun getting rid of one another.

Add the cost of building the new car park to this (£M15 - Kerching!) and the cost of demolition of the old car park and then see what a fine mess Rod's got everyone in.

If anyone sees a tallish fellow wandering around the new car park dressed in a "Crapita Car Parks" uniform, talking to himself about innovation and public realms while picking up litter, it'll be Rod in his new job. If he is lucky.
What's it all about?

Offline Des Morgan

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Re: SBC losing money on its car parks
« Reply #5 on: January 11, 2013, 08:28:06 AM »
Quote
If anyone sees a tallish fellow wandering around the new car park dressed in a "Crapita Car Parks" uniform, talking to himself about innovation and public realms while picking up litter, it'll be Rod in his new job. If he is lucky.

Would the new head of 'Crapita' Mr Hitesh Patel employ Mr Bluh?  I suppose if the pay off from his current job is okay, he might.  only musing - I know nothing  :santa_evil:

Offline Muggins

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Re: SBC losing money on its car parks
« Reply #6 on: January 11, 2013, 08:30:36 AM »
That's the sad thing, that won't happen - he is not an employee. 

He won't have to face up to any single person who loses their job. If every employee at SBC pointed in his direction they couldn't get rid of him. 

If every person in every other ward (except his) in Swindon we couldn't get rid of him.

It's down to the people in his ward not to vote for him. 

And that is what we are up against. And even then it could be better the devil you know than the one you don't.
Oi! Listen mush. Old eyes, remember? I’ve been around the block a few times. More than a few. They’ve knocked down the blocks I’ve been around and rebuilt them as bigger blocks. Super blocks. And I’ve been round them as well.  The Doctor (Night Terrors)

Offline Martin Wicks

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Re: SBC losing money on its car parks
« Reply #7 on: January 11, 2013, 12:08:13 PM »
New head of Capita?

Offline I Could Do That

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Re: SBC losing money on its car parks
« Reply #8 on: January 11, 2013, 12:47:24 PM »
Is money being lost on previously existing car parks?

A flat(ish) area if tarmac.
No buildings to maintain.
Charge people via a machine to use it.

How can they lose money?

Sounds like creative accountancy to me
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ph1lc

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Re: SBC losing money on its car parks
« Reply #9 on: January 11, 2013, 12:54:22 PM »
I think that the figures quoted are misleading.

They appear to be showing the revenue from car parks, less the money spent on car parks.

The fact that SBC has spent more than it collected is very different from saying they lost money on car parks.
Up grading a car park is a capital expense, not a revenue expense, which will be written off over several years.

If they are saying we invested £1.5 mill plus on improving our car parks over a couple of years that's good news.

Offline Alligator

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Re: SBC losing money on its car parks
« Reply #10 on: January 11, 2013, 02:37:54 PM »
I'm not sure what to read into these figures without more detail on the running costs.  As Ph1lc has said there are a number of questions around which accounts are reflected in the numbers, but I'd also question what is included in the revenue numbers.  Is it purely what is taken in parking charges or penalty notices as well?

You also don't have to look too far back into the TS archives to see that SBC didn't manage the connection, or overlap, in warden costs associated with the resident's parking scheme and car park management particularly well.  The result of this was a massive increase in resident parking charges.

Whatever these numbers showed, I doubt SBC could win.  Had they shown a large surplus I'm sure that there would be many people pointing out that SBC were profiting while the town centre struggles to survive and attract new shops and shoppers.  Equally the apparent loss has resulted in questions about their investment in the new car park.

As a tax payer, and taking the numbers at face value, I'm pleased to see the numbers heading in the right direction and hope that this is due to increased usage as a result of reduced parking charges a couple of years back.  Car parking is a service where, over time, the numbers should balance as car parking is a service, not a profit centre. 

I wouldn't want those people who don't use the car park to be subsidised by car park users or vice versa.


Offline Des Morgan

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Re: SBC losing money on its car parks
« Reply #11 on: January 11, 2013, 03:55:03 PM »

Quote
As a tax payer, and taking the numbers at face value, I'm pleased to see the numbers heading in the right direction and hope that this is due to increased usage as a result of reduced parking charges a couple of years back.   Car parking is a service where, over time, the numbers should balance as car parking is a service, not a profit centre.


Actually the detail behind the figures demonstrates that less people are using the town car parks.

The new £15 million car park is being promoted as a strategy to retain companies such as Allied Dunbar and special deals will be made available to give employees preferential rates for weekday usage.

Offline Alligator

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Re: SBC losing money on its car parks
« Reply #12 on: January 11, 2013, 05:04:28 PM »
Actually the detail behind the figures demonstrates that less people are using the town car parks.

The new £15 million car park is being promoted as a strategy to retain companies such as Allied Dunbar and special deals will be made available to give employees preferential rates for weekday usage.

I look forward to you posting the detail you refer to Des.   :santa_smiley:

I think your point about allowing businesses located in the town centre to use the new car park is a good idea.  This practice has been used in Reading and has helped to keep a number of employers in the area.

Offline Alex

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Re: SBC losing money on its car parks
« Reply #13 on: January 11, 2013, 08:20:08 PM »
I was again surprised to find only one other car in on the entire floor of the multi-story carpark next to the Wyvern today. ( The floor with the walkway to the Wyvern) .
We were there for 3 hours for the second time in a month, each time only one other car was there. Hardly what you'd call packed.

The other floors were relatively empty too.

Hardly points to a need for another carpark in town,

Offline Terry Reynolds

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Re: SBC losing money on its car parks
« Reply #14 on: January 11, 2013, 08:37:49 PM »
Did you notice how many were in the one next to the bus station, which is due to come down once they have this new one in place and the 'bus station' is resighted in fleming way.. :santa_wink:

Offline Des Morgan

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Re: SBC losing money on its car parks
« Reply #15 on: January 11, 2013, 11:21:42 PM »
Quote
I look forward to you posting the detail you refer to Des.

It is a matter of record in the Swindon Borough Council budget pack - I will get a copy

Offline itspavagain

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Re: SBC losing money on its car parks
« Reply #16 on: January 12, 2013, 11:28:46 AM »

So why not waste another £15m on a new car park that is not required!!

How on earth can this lot hope to balance the books?

Unbelievable

But this doesn't illustrate how utilised the car parks are. If they are all full, then it does suggest a new car park is required but that also the council are charging too little.

Offline darrey80

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Re: SBC losing money on its car parks
« Reply #17 on: March 07, 2013, 06:36:50 PM »
The car parks at Islington St could be pulled down to make way for town redevelopment. That could well end up meaning lower cost car parks and land to sell off for redevelopment.

Offline bobwright

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Re: SBC losing money on its car parks
« Reply #18 on: March 07, 2013, 11:20:28 PM »
A previous plan for the Town Centre had a Winter Garden on the the new Car Park site. It is understood by some that the new car park will never pay for itself. What is the point of the car park if we don't provide a draw to bring people into town to use it?
Whilst I am happy to have a debate on an alternative to a Winter Garden it should at least provide work and something new for the Town Centre other than straight forward shops.

The debate did not take place as the administration had decided to replace a car park which was only ever a third full of local staff cars and a few shoppers. This we were told was part of car park strategy which neatly emerged at the time of the proposal.  We are now investing £15 million of borrowed money, paid for by local tax.

The debate could/should have been what can we develop for £15 million to draw people into the Town centre which draw people in across four seasons and support existing day and night time economies? This would still show Muse we are serious about investing in Swindon, which we are. Also much for the Cultural Avenue connecting the new development with the Town Hall. We now have the Whale misjunction and a car park?

Offline Alex

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Re: SBC losing money on its car parks
« Reply #19 on: March 08, 2013, 09:36:14 AM »
And again after several more trips to Town over the past month I have never seen more than two cars on the third floor, a few more on the second and the rest empty in the car-park adjacent to the Wyvern.

Draw your own conclusions but the new multi-storey car-park  looks like a shameful waste of money to me.

Offline Richard Symonds

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Re: SBC losing money on its car parks
« Reply #20 on: March 08, 2013, 06:37:07 PM »
And again after several more trips to Town over the past month I have never seen more than two cars on the third floor, a few more on the second and the rest empty in the car-park adjacent to the Wyvern.

Draw your own conclusions but the new multi-storey car-park  looks like a shameful waste of money to me.

Exactly, and is it not significant that the savings required, being £15m, matched the cost of the new one?

Well there it is, in all its glory.

Will they place an erection of Rod, as a reminder, in the form of a statue?

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Offline Mickraker

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Re: SBC losing money on its car parks
« Reply #21 on: March 09, 2013, 07:12:59 AM »
After reading this thread it could be Swindon needs a new carpark like it needs a hole in its finances  :-\
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Offline Spunkymonkey

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Re: SBC losing money on its car parks
« Reply #22 on: March 09, 2013, 12:06:14 PM »
I had the misfortune of visiting The Parade (John Street) car park today. I haven't been there since the Whalebridge junction was ... err ..... improved. Approaching from Manchester Road area, it is quite difficult to get to as you have to turn left at Whalebridge, do a U-turn at Halfords, left into Princes Street, right at the new lights and then circumnavigate the other car parks etc.

It occurred to me that the Whalebridge junction will similarly impede access to the new multi-storey car park. It doesn't appear  to be the best thought out plan.

Offline komadori

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Re: Re: SBC losing money on its car parks
« Reply #23 on: March 09, 2013, 12:27:31 PM »
It occurred to me that the Whalebridge junction will similarly impede access to the new multi-storey car park. It doesn't appear  to be the best thought out plan.
The council's car park strategy was originally part of a wider traffic management strategy for the town centre. That included major changes to the road network, intended to discourage people from driving through the town centre rather than to the town centre. In that strategy, the siting of the new car park - and closure of some existing ones - made sense.

Unfortunately, the stalled regeneration of the town centre seems to be resulting in the car park strategy getting ahead of the traffic management strategy. If the two don't happen together, it's likely to be rather a mess.

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