Sinn Féin Councillor Joanna Byrne has today condemned the Local Authority for their plans to remove yet another public carpark in Drogheda.
A recent announcement was made by Louth County Council that they intend to take possession back of the previous O’Reilly’s unit on Narrow West to facilitate the relocation of council staff from Fair St for the duration of the redevelopment of the Council Office’s.
Following this Cllr Byrne sought clarification from the Local Authority as to what this meant for the 40+ public car-parking spaces at the rear of this building, only to be told that this will be used for staff parking.
Cllr Byrne has expressed her utter dismay at this decision.
She says “The decision to close another carpark in the centre of the town in the coming months has been made with no regard to the people of this town who use it, and no regard for the implications of the same to the trade in the town. This carpark is
40+ Car Park spaces are to be taken over by the local authority for staff parking
specifically central to Doctor’s, Dentist’s and Pharmacies, and is also the closest carpark to West St, the main thoroughfare of the town. Parking is already a nightmare in Drogheda at the best of times, never mind the chaos that is currently ensuing over the parking bye-laws debacle, and now this. It is simply unacceptable, especially considering the O’Reilly’s building was originally bought for the purpose of parking, which of course never transpired.”
Cllr Byrne has already expressed her dissatisfaction about this decision to The Director of Corporate Services for Louth County Council and will be raising this further at the next sitting of The Municipal District of Drogheda.
With the all day car park at the former Fire Station site on Scarlet Street now being developed as Social Housing, Cllr. Kenneth Flood has called for the council to develop a new all day car park to serve the town.
Cllr. Flood said
“Although the Scarlet Street site was never intended to be a car park in the long term, the fact that it was always full did highlight the need for long term parking in the town. It has been used by those working in the town centre and by those who availed of its location to park up and then walk the short distance to Georges Street to commute outside of Drogheda.
“The response to my motion “There are no plans to develop a replacement long term car park in this area at present” in my opinion is rejecting the motion outright without considering it properly.
“Louth County Council have a record of neglecting parking issues in Drogheda. They have also been shamefully wasteful in this regard spending €9.5 million in 2007 on the O’Reilly’s Shop site in Narrow West Street for development as a multi story car park but have not followed through on the plan. The town has also lost the Riverfront car park’s to the development of the New Court House, with no plans for a replacement for them from Louth County Council.
“The OPW also committed to building a parking facility at Lower Mell with a riverside walk way connecting it to the town passing under the bridge of peace but this didn’t happen either.
“The fact that there have been plans for parking facilities made in Drogheda shows that the authorities recognise there is a need for additional parking in Drogheda. It is their inaction that has lead to a dearth of adequate parking in our town. Those previous plans must be actioned.
“However there is still a further need for additional parking within walking distance to the town center and near the commuter routes and that is what my motion is calling for. Again, the fact that the Scarlet Street car park was always full is evidence of that and I will push to see my motion accepted and through to completion”.