Council parking management is worth £3.58 billion per year to London’s economy

  • By Gemma Kappala-R...

Parking management undertaken by councils is an essential public service that benefits London’s economy while helping to deal with traffic, improve air quality and ensure better road safety, finds new research commissioned by London Councils.

London Councils commissioned Integrated Transport Planning (ITP) to research public parking management in London, which is the responsibility of London boroughs, by evaluating the cumulative impact of parking measures such as bays, yellow lines and parking zones.

The report sums up the value parking services add to the capital, which it estimates at £3.58 billion per year. It also assesses the cost-benefit ratio of parking management, which stands at 10:1 – for every pound spent on parking measures, London benefits tenfold.

Around 9.6 million trips are made in London by car, taxi or private hire vehicle each day. At the beginning and end of these 9.6 million journeys, motorists must use some form of parking service. 

However, this report shows that motorists are not the only people who benefit from boroughs’ parking management – it has wider benefits for all Londoners.

The study defines eight benefits of parking management:
• Reducing congestion;
• Improving road safety;
• Improving air quality;
• Ensuring good access and accessibility;
• Promoting the local economy;
• Maximising the productive use of the land resource;
• Promoting health and wellbeing through travel choice; and
• Providing funding for parking and wider transport scheme improvements, including the Freedom Pass concessionary travel scheme.

These benefits are achieved by using different combinations of parking measures. For example, in order to reduce obstructive parking on a busy route, boroughs can use parking controls to reduce congestion and also ensure there is a supply of good parking options nearby.

Cllr Julian Bell, Chair of London Councils’ Transport and Environment Committee, said:

“Many people only think about parking when they have a bad experience, such as when they can’t find a space or if they do receive a parking ticket. This means it is easy to misunderstand why councils and TfL manage parking services.

“However, with nearly 10 million journeys made in the capital daily, our report shows that parking management makes a major contribution to London’s economy, worth £3.58 billion, and every pound invested in parking services benefits our city ten times over.

“London boroughs use a range of parking measures in different parts of the capital to ensure people, goods and services can move around the city safely and efficiently, incentivising cleaner and healthier forms of transport whenever possible.” 

Click here to read the report in full.


Notes to Editors:

Integrated Transport Planning (ITP) Ltd. was commissioned by London Councils in December 2017 to undertake research into the subject of parking management. The aim of the research was to examine the positive contribution that parking management makes to the London economy – inclusive of societal and environmental contributions – and the importance of the role played by the 32 London boroughs and the City of London Corporation as parking service providers.

London Councils’ work to understand the benefits of parking management is aligned with the Positive Parking Agenda (PPA). For more information on the PPA, visit

London Councils represents London’s thirty-two boroughs and the City of London; making the case to government, the Mayor and others to get the best deal for Londoners and to ensure that our member authorities have the resources, freedoms and powers to do the best possible job for residents and local businesses.