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24/09/2021

SDLP candidate Mary Durkan calls for inter-agency review on car parking 'crisis'

Mary Durkan

SDLP council candidate for Foyleside, Mary Durkan, says there must be no further delays in ensuring ‘full, proper and guaranteed’ parking places for city-centre residents outside their homes.

Ms Durkan said: "We need an urgent inter-agency review across the Council area to deal with this matter immediately.

"It is completely unacceptable that people paying huge rates have no proper access to their homes. Residents of the Lawrence Hill/Clarence Avenue area, for example have told me that as far back as 2004 they were given assurances that the issue would be addressed via the implementation of an appropriate scheme. All the relevant agencies must sit down and consider why we are no closer to resolution on the issue today.

"The parking situation for residents right along the Northland Road, Academy Road and lower Rosemount areas is shocking. Their streets – and the spaces outside their homes – are filling up before 8am.

"It is now virtually impossible to complete a school run and re-park outside – or even near to - your own home. Likewise, residents cannot shop, visit or leave their homes to do any sort of business during the day, as they cannot get a space anywhere in their neighbourhood. This causes huge, unnecessary stress on residents.

"Residents tell me that the lack of proper parking provision for workers and other users of Magee, the North West Regional College and the Strand Road Council offices adds to the problem. They must also be part of the conversation and any review."

Ms Durkan added that it would be also crucial to consider how best to improve usage of Derry’s public transport system – alongside other environmentally-friendly transport schemes already being adopted by many businesses and schools.

"Private car use, residents tell me, is at an all-time high in the city, but there are more and more initiatives being put in place to promote the advantages of cycling, walking to work, and park-and ride schemes.

‘We need to develop these initiatives as part of the long-term, holistic solution – while also taking remedial action to address the immediate problems faced by city-centre residents," she said.

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