BLACKBIRD Leys residents struggling to park on their road have accused Oxford City Council of not making the most of available space.
Angelica Close resident Rebecca Lee, who does not drive, has spare land fenced-off next to her home that she believes could help solve the problem.
She claims she has asked the council to remove the fencing and free up the space for drivers to park there, but says she has had no reply.
Ms Lee said she had offered to return the land, which she rents from the council as part of her home, as public property.
The mum-of-three said: “I have this garden that I don’t use because I don’t have a car.
“The weeds have come back in the gravel and I just can’t manage it.
“I got in touch with my housing officer when I moved in a year ago, because I never use it, but I never heard anything back.”
The 43-year-old said: “I feel very selfish because it’s just empty space and parking is a real problem here. I did say to my neighbours that they could use it, but without the council taking the fence away I think they feel uncomfortable.
“You could probably fit four cars in there if you did it properly.”
Ms Lee’s neighbour Gavin Brackett, 34, said the lack of parking on the road was dangerous for his three children Gavin Junior, four, Jalle, three, and Annie, one.
He said: “All of my kids are under the age of five, and my only option is to park on the main road where the traffic and buses are coming.
“It poses a risk to my kids’ life when I’ve got three car seats to juggle and three toddlers running around.”
Oliver Prickett, 34, has lived on the close for eight years, and said that it wasn’t just Ms Lee’s land the council should turn into parking.
He said: “I don’t see why we can’t park on the grass square at the end of the road. We don’t need that much grass when on some days I can’t park on my road.”
But Gwen Green, 61, said: “We like the green. There’s too much grass going in our city.
“You can’t be looking at concrete and parked cars all the time.
The receptionist said: “We have two cars and we’re always able to park, and if not you can just park round the corner.”
Council spokesman Chofamba Sithole declined to comment on Ms Lee’s offer but said: “With a budget of just over £1m to be spent on projects over a period of three years, we have now completed new parking facilities on several sites including Blackbird Leys.”
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11:20am Monday 28th July 2014
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