Parking plan opposition grows

The Otago Farmers Market is the latest business to come out in opposition to changes that would replace car parks directly outside the market with a cycleway.

The market was joined yesterday in its concerns by the Cobb & Co restaurant planned for the Dunedin Railway Station, and the Otago Art Society.

That follows Ironic Cafe and Dunedin Railways on Monday saying the plan to remove parks at the tourism hot spot would be a mistake.

The council unveiled its plans late last week for a $7million project to improve cycleways in the city, enhancing connections between the New Zealand Transport Agency's one-way-system cycle lanes and connecting the city and harbour's cycleway networks.

It included a new cycleway in Anzac Ave from the railway station to St Andrew St.

From St Andrew St, the cycleway would leave the road and run alongside the railway line to a new bridge over the Water of Leith.

The plan meant 19 parks directly outside the farmers market - all the parks on that side of the block - would make way for the cycleway.

New parks would be added on the other side of the road, and a car park area at the north end of the railway station would include public parks.

But farmers market general manager Kate Vercoe said good parking was needed right outside the market to provide access for the elderly and people with disabilities.

If parks were taken away from that side of the road those people would be confronted with having to cross a busy road.

''Research shows that farmers markets need good parking around them.''

She said it was uncertain what would happen to the Cadbury car park across the road - used by customers on Saturdays, and a fund raiser for the market - once Cadbury closed.

''Unless there's replacement parking planned, we're going to end up with more problems.''

Ange Copson, general manager of the Cobb & Co restaurant development at the railway station, said the company supported a cycleway through the area, but wanted one which did not affect parking.

The company had made a submission to the council about how that could be achieved.

The idea was a two-way cycleway in Anzac Ave next to the farmers market, but with the road converted to a one-way heading south.

Mrs Copson said affordable car parking was ''very important'', not just for her business but all the others in the area.

With the development of Cadbury World on Castle St, the area would only get busier.

Otago Art Society president Nic Dempster said yesterday the society, based on the first floor of the railway station, had not been consulted, despite the council saying on Monday all stakeholders had been.

Mr Dempster said the society supported the cycleway, but not at the expense of car parks for visitors to the station.

Late yesterday, council transport group manager Richard Saunders said staff had since spoken to the society, and would include them in consultation.

david.loughrey@odt.co.nz

Comments

A small point that seems to have been overlooked. This is apparently an additional $7million spend on cycle paths. On top of the $10 million being wasted on the one way system bike track. Just where are DCC getting their 30% share from? Sorry, that should be ratepayers share, not DCC's share.
Just what programs are getting cut Mr Cull? No more mayoral cars would be a start, after all you think people should be cycling everywhere, why not lead by example?

Will those who propose changes without thinking through the implications please take time to think more carefully in future? These businesses are the ones that pay the rates that keep the DCC going, that pay the committees that come up with this stuff and pay for the road to be denuded of car parks that are essential to their businesses success. If people find it is difficult to get parking near a cafe for example they will simply go elsewhere, thus threatening the continuation of the success that comes with good service and good products.

More cycles, less vehicles I say (and I'm handicapped).