Short stay car park axed

BUSINESSES have been given a boost after Angus Council decided to abandon plans to convert the Marketgate/Ladybridge Street car park into a short stay facility.

As reported last week, around 40 local firms had objected to the proposals. They were concerned that limiting parking to two hours would leave staff, customers and clients with nowhere to leave their cars.

But at a meeting of Angus Council’s infrastructure services committee on Thursday, members voted to scrap the idea despite the recommendation by officers that it should go ahead.

They believed that limiting the parking time would free up more spaces and increase turnover, which would in turn attract more tourists and shoppers to the town.

However, local businessman Heinz Voigt, of the Voigt Partnership, addressed the meeting on behalf of the 40 firms and said the move could harm businesses.

And after the plan was scrapped, Mr Voigt was pleased members had taken on board his comments.

He said: “All the businesses are delighted and we appreciate very much that the committee listened to us.

“We have received loads of ‘phone calls from other businesses who are very happy with the outcome.

“Obviously the town does need a car park like this but the Marketgate car park was not the right place.

“This will give a real boost to businesses worried about this.”

Fellow businessman Craig Elrick, who runs Catardi’s Cafe on Commerce Street, was one of the firms who had objected to the move.

And he added: “It is fantastic news and we are quite happy with the result.

“Our main concern was that the streets around the harbour would get too congested if this went ahead.

“But I still feel there needs to be more car parking in Arbroath because there are still not sufficient facilities close to the town centre.”

Not only was the short stay plan thrown out by councillors, the planned improvements to the car park worth £121,000 were also scrapped.