CIVIC chiefs have revealed that plans to bring a park and ride to Barton Farm could be halted if progress is taken on a major facility to the north of the city.

Long-mooted plans are expected to bring a “park and ride light” to the development, also known as Kings Barton, but discussions are also progressing to bring a major facility which could be built on land at the edge of the city or near a major motorway.

Currently the city council are in talks with CALA about providing spaces for commuters on the 2,000-home scheme, but at a Kings Barton forum meeting earlier this month the strategic director Steve Tilbury said that the authority is now looking at a different avenue to provide much-needed spaces.

Mr Tilbury said: “We are now looking at the operation of a full-scale park and ride to the north.

“If as a result of work with the movement strategy, a location and ways and means of providing a full-scale park and ride to the north [can be found] we will talk to CALA about the park and ride light facility as to whether that is still required.”

Councillors were told that there is no available space within the Kings Barton development for a full park and ride, similar to those south and east of the city which currently provide 1,861 spaces.

The meeting was told that money through funding from developers is available for the parking facility.

“It is not a complex operation. We are not commissioning or tendering for services. It should be relatively straight forward to make this happen,” Mr Tilbury added.

CALA Senior Design and Planning Manager Viv Hill said: "We are aware of the joint Hampshire County Council and Winchester City Council work on the movement strategy and await the results of this study and/or recommendations for the north of the city.

"Part of the wider infrastructure delivery for our site at Kings Barton includes planning consent for a 200 vehicle Park and Ride which we are required to deliver by the 650th occupation.

"It remains CALA Homes intention to implement this consent and build the Park and Ride in line with our planning obligations unless, through our continued collaborative engagement with WCC and HCC as we build out the residential phases of development an alternative solution is identified."

The council has also clarified its position, saying: "As part of the Kings Barton planning consent a parking facility will be created which will be served by a local bus service, initially funded from financial contributions made by CALA.  We have called this a ‘park and ride light’ because there will be no separate dedicated bus service and it is intended to provide an additional option to relieve pressure on town centre car parking, rather than make a strategic impact on traffic.

“The Winchester movement strategy identifies the longer term ambition to provide a full service park and ride site to the north of the city to help create a significant reduction in traffic entering the one-way system.  This would be much larger than the facility at Kings Barton, but it will also take longer to identify a suitable location and complete all the necessary planning and procurement processes. If we are able to proceed with this larger scheme in due course, we would decide whether to retain or repurpose the Kings Barton's facility, taking account of how well it has worked and the benefits that it provides.”

Previous potential sites listed for the new park and ride included Andover Road North; Easton Lane, which leads onto junction nine of the M3 at Winnall; and Alresford Road, which heads out of the city towards the A31.

However, space on the A31 appears to be limited to green land in the countryside. If the Easton Lane site was chosen, it would likely come after the major changes set to be made to junction nine by Highways England in 2021/22.

If plans do progress it is understood that if plans progress it would be more than five years away.