Free up the roads - convert front-gardens to parking spaces

There are lots of residential roads that are impassible by cars going in opposite directions because they are flanked by parked cars.  I see an awful lot of front gardens that are neglected that could be used for parking space.  Why don't we encourage people to convert their front gardens to parking spots?

Why the contribution is important

Bristol's heavily congested roads can be alleviated by this measure.

by user748924 on November 22, 2013 at 11:40AM

Current Rating

Average rating: 1.6
Based on: 22 votes


  • Posted by user734334 November 22, 2013 at 17:02

    Sorry, no. Will reduce bio diversity even more and will further reduce quality of life in the city I think.
  • Posted by user122507 November 23, 2013 at 19:05

    Excellent idea! I was thinking about this earlier today. You could give grants & lower the price of a dropped kerb. The council could even contract for the work where half a dozen households clubbed together.
  • Posted by user848589 November 24, 2013 at 15:49

    I really don't think this meets Bristol's ambition to be the most environmentally friendly city and European Green Capital 2015.
  • Posted by user516886 November 25, 2013 at 15:51

    I disagree with this idea. As yhin points out, front gardens are valuable green space. Further paving over of the city will increase run-off. We should be trying to tackle this problem from the opposite angle: reduce car usage!
  • Posted by user536903 November 25, 2013 at 16:56

    no.. not a good idea to remove the front gardens.. may be altered to accommodate the car rather than removing it completely.
  • Posted by user515911 November 25, 2013 at 23:11

    I totally oppose this. If we want more people to walk rather than drive, every road a sea of concrete and tarmac will be very offputting. It would have a diastrous effect on Bristol's `green' credentials, have an adverse effect on air quality and also probably exacerbate flash flooding.
  • Posted by user770823 November 25, 2013 at 23:35

    Also increased impermeable area leads to increased rainfall runoff, thus increasing local flood risk
  • Posted by user681880 November 26, 2013 at 15:30

    No! front gardens are really important green space, its not all about the car...
  • Posted by user302288 November 26, 2013 at 16:41

    This is totally the wrong approach!
    What are you doing with a car if all you want to do with it is have it block your view? Also what are you doing with an expensive piece of land, ie your front or back garden, if you dont want to see and grow anything green and pleasant in it?
    Anyone who has or intends to concrete over their drive should be fined by the Council and be made to move into a flat!!
  • Posted by user952345 November 28, 2013 at 17:25

    There are plenty of ways to make a driveway usable for cars without increasing surface runoff - gravel being probably the simplest and cheapest. My front garden is mostly gravel anyway, even though I don't use it for parking a car.

    You can also get reinforced grids that allow cars to drive over grass or other low-lying plants without damaging them. That would probably encourage more biodiversity than the crumbling local authority concrete or dubious 1970s crazy paving that already covers lot of front gardens.

    Here are the government guidelines on this subject:[…]/pavingfrontgardens.pdf

    Encouraging more people to park on their own property could improve safety on the roads (improved visibility, prevent car doors opening on cyclists etc). It would also make it easier to organise things like street parties, and if combined with this idea:[…]/share-the-roads might even make it safe for children to actually play in the streets again.
  • Posted by user862057 December 12, 2013 at 11:17

    No way. How's about people drive less instead? Have you ever been down a street where the front garden has been torn up for parking? Bloody miserable streets.
  • Posted by user690930 December 14, 2013 at 17:08

    This is totally the wrong way to go
    Turn the gardens back into a growing area and feed people
    We need to " Fight The Cars " and not serve them
  • Posted by user412750 December 20, 2013 at 17:38

    Absolutely the worst idea I've read yet in the ideas lab and totally misguided.

    Gardens are important for biodiversity, and for positive aesthetics. If they're neglected, then perhaps what is needed is a scheme to get them back into use. Not to destroy them!

    There's a shortage of allotments in some areas, so why don't people who aren't using their front gardens allow those who want an allotment but who are stuck on a long waiting list to use their garden to grow things while they wait?

    The Council could facilitate this by providing a website which could put up offers from people with neglected front gardens. People who don't have gardens but who want to grow things could use this to easily locate a neglected front garden that is near to where they live that they could cultivate.

    Gardening - either for flowers or food or both - is very therapeutic and rewarding, and its benefits should be made available to those who would love to do it but don't own or rent any cultivable land. It would be of broader benefit, because there's no doubt that streets with tended gardens have a much nicer feel to them, and tended gardens are also generally probably going to be of higher ecological value. This would also be a good way to help reinvigorate our largely lost community spirit.
  • Posted by user678301 December 20, 2013 at 22:31

    Agree with just about everyone else, we need less cars and more green spaces not the other way round!
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