Connect with Tim PharoahConnect with Tim Pharoah
Dumbarton housing and parking advice

Dumbarton housing and parking advice

[Banner image courtesy Google: Dumbarton riverfront. The prominent building lies at the centre of the development site.]

The amount and type of parking in new residential developments can be one of the most difficult issues to resolve, both in striving for a high quality design, and in satisfying the planning authorities. The amount of space devoted to parking directly affects the amount of amenity space and/or the number of dwellings that can be accommodated on the site. For the housing developer, the scheme must strike an appropriate balance between quality and viability. Viability and quality also are closely linked.

The housing scheme proposed for a central site in Dumbarton by the Carvill Group aimed towards high environmental quality and a high dgree of sustainability, not least by aiming for occupants who would make less than average use of cars. More information on the scheme for 290 new homes on the former Allied distillery site can be found here:

The scheme was refused planning permission, and was also refused on appeal. Tim Pharoah was involved in drawing up the parking aspect of the scheme, which was one of the grounds for refusal. 

Parking benchmarking  survey

Attempts to persuade the planning authority that a lower than normal parking ratio was appropriate for the site included a survey of other recent apartment developments in the town. The amount of peak residential parking demand was surveyed and compared with parking provision at six developments. The pdfs describe the survey and the results.

The outcome of the survey was not persuasive, but there were other aspects of the case that justified a car-reduced solution. One was the site location, adjacent to the town centre and the river. A second was the presence adjacent to the site of a 76-space public car park with a pattern of parking demand opposite to that of a residential scheme. In practice, if surplus overnight demand did arise from the housing scheme, this could be accommodated in the public car park.

LocationDumbarton Scotland
Client(s)Carvill Group
Team(s)Tim Pharoah alongside Llewelyn Davies team


Residential parking, car reduced housing, sustainable transport, town centre regeneration, Dumbarton