Get involved: send your photos, videos, news & views by texting OXFORD NEWS to 80360 or email us
Tenants upset as council pays consultants £42,500
A STUDY into estate car parking problems that cost £42,500 has been branded a “diabolical” use of council cash.
Oxford City Council paid a London consultancy firm the cash this summer to look into the parking issues and solutions.
But critics say the problems were obvious and council staff could have done the work themselves.
Blackbird Leys Parish Council has written a letter of complaint to the city council.
Chairman Gordon Roper said: “I think it is diabolical that they can spend that kind of money on stuff like that.
“The council has officers who could have gone around the estate to see what the problems are.
“But we can all see what the problems are. It costs nothing.”
The report came back with suggestions of where the city council could find spaces for drivers to park.
Parish councillor Brian Lester learnt of the fee through a Freedom of Information Act request.
He said: “Their report didn’t provide a spectacular conclusion because the residents already know where the problems lie.
“There are at least five to six competent council officers who could have done the same job as the consultants and probably come up with a better report.”
The Pegasus Road resident added: “I hope the chief executive will respond to this letter and take action against those who sanctioned such a costly project.”
He told the Oxford Mail the job could have been done for less money and to a better standard by council officers.
He said problems caused by cars parking on the bus route were not mentioned enough in the report, adding: “This to me and other people should be the priority.”
City council spokeswoman Louisa Dean defended the spending.
She said: “We are responding to residents’ priorities and delivering better and more parking.
“We asked consultants to carry out a parking study for Blackbird Leys as part of our exciting plans to regenerate the estate.
“The study looked at parking supply and demand as well as designs for increasing the parking areas.
“We will be starting works to install some of the most urgent schemes in early 2014.”
As a result of the report plans were last month submitted by the city council to create 18 parking spaces on a grass verge where Blackbird Leys Road meets Balfour Road to get parked cars off the roads.
Comments are closed on this article.