New South Winchester Park and Ride opens for business
More choice for commuters and visitors and a ‘greener’ way to get into Winchester city centre - that’s the aim of the new £7.1 million South Winchester Park and Ride scheme which opens on Monday 19 April at 7.am.
The launch of the new service follows 12 months work to build the car park and facilities for people using the Park and Ride. Highway works at Hockley Link, Otterbourne Road, Badger Farm Road and Bushfield roundabout have also been included as part of the scheme.
Located just off Junction 11 of the M3 the new Park and Ride – Winchester’s third – offers 864 parking spaces with frequent, low emission buses into the city stopping at key destinations in Winchester for commuters, residents and visitors.
A partnership project between Hampshire County Council and Winchester City Council, the scheme is designed to reduce the volume of traffic travelling into the city centre, improve air quality and relieve congestion at peak times. It has also been designed to improve the environment for pedestrians and cyclists as well as promoting public transport as a practical alternative to car use for the most environmentally damaging part of the journey into Winchester.
The finishing touches include new bus shelters outside the Royal Hampshire County Hospital, new bus stops at St John’s House and Jewry Street, and clear signs at each stop showing the direction of the bus and the where it picks up and drops off passengers.
The route along Romsey Road links to the other two schemes at Barfield and St Catherine’s and gives commuters more choice and flexibility. The buses meet the latest standards in vehicle emissions and there are a wide range of ‘green’ measures at the Park and Ride site including sensors on taps and lighting, a sedum roof on the amenity building, five electric vehicle charging points and over 10,000 trees and shrubs planted as part of the landscaping.
Councillor Mel Kendal, Executive Member for Environment said: “This new Park and Ride promises to make a big difference to people travelling into Winchester for work or pleasure, and we’re delighted the project has been completed on time and to budget.
“With frequent buses into the city centre and a route that includes many major employers, it will be cost effective and convenient for commuters and shoppers as well as people catching trains or visiting the Royal Hampshire County Hospital.”
Steve Tilbury Corporate Director Operations at Winchester City Council said, “The new scheme will bring choice and convenience to users, with buses operating from 7am in the morning until 9.30pm at night, every 10 minutes at peak times and every 15 minutes off peak. There are discounts for season ticket holders and those using a smart card, and we have also introduced an off peak rate of £2 after 10.30am which is the cheapest way to park all day in Winchester. ”
Winchester City Council is also working with businesses across the city to encourage them to take up corporate spaces at the sites. A new website dedicated to travelling using Park & Ride, which will launch on Monday, www.winchesterparkandride.co.uk gives full details of ticket prices, timetables and route maps. Tickets and smart cards are available from Winchester City Council’s Parking Office in Colebrook Street, or call 01962 848 346.
Park and Ride facilities
The new scheme will provide an 864 space park and ride car park and central amenities building on the Itchen Farm site (known locally as the Tarmac site), next to junction 11 of the M3. The amenity building includes toilets, bus information, shelters and waiting areas. A ‘green’ roof with low-level planting will help blend the building into the surrounding landscape. CCTV coverage and lighting will enhance security, with lamps designed to reduce upward light pollution.
Five electric vehicle charging points have been installed in the car park – among the first in the south of England.