AROUND 40 local businesses have objected to Angus Council’s proposal to limit the parking time at a town centre car park.
At a meeting of the council’s infrastructure services committee yesterday (Thursday) after the Herald went to press, councillors were being recommended to approve the restrictions at the Marketgate/Ladybridge Street facility.
The proposal, which had been out to public consultation, would see the cars limited to parking in the car park for a maximum of two hours.
It is argued this would free up spaces and increase turnover in the car park in a bid to attract more shoppers and tourists.
Previously, local business including the Voigt Partnership and Commercial and Agricultural Insurance Brokers voiced their concerns saying the move could seriously affect business if staff, customers and clients are left with nowhere to park.
And before yesterday’s meeting, Heinz Voigt, from the Voigt Partnership, confirmed he would be speaking on behalf of around 40 businesses which are all opposed to limiting the parking time.
He told the Herald: “I think it will be a travesty if this goes ahead and I will be speaking at the meeting.
“I am very much against as a lot of business people use this car park and I believe this move would be a backwards step towards assisting business in the town.
“I am in favour and totally welcome any upgrade to the car park but it is the wrong place to make it short stay.
“If visitors are coming into the town to visit the Abbey, you couldn’t get a car park that is so far away.”
In the report that was to be circulated at the meeting, it is recommended members agree to change the car park to short stay and approve a £121,000 upgrade of the facility.
However, during the consultation period 26 letters and 21 emails of objection were received by the council.
Concerns raised included the impact on businesses but also the impact of people who live in the nearby area and also use the car park.
It was also pointed out by objectors that the restriction could impact on performances at the nearby Webster Memorial Theatre and that most of the High Street shops are located at the other end of the town centre.
Other objectors noted that anybody visiting the town would probably want to spend more than two hours there.
But in the report director of infrastructure services Eric Lowson says: “There is a desire to provide additional short stay car parking near the High Street in Arbroath and the conversion of the Ladybridge Street/Marketgate car park to short stay parking is the most suitable available location for this provision.”
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