Price to pay for seaside parking

First published in News

A DECISION to increase parking charges at Barry Island and other coastal Vale car parks has been greeted with dismay.

Cabinet members approved a recommendation, on Monday (March 10) to raise prices, last set in 2010/11, at Barry Island’s car parks by £1 for cars.

The fee for parking a car for up to one hour will be £2 with all-day parking set at £5.

Fees for coaches will rise from £5 to £10.

The other car parks affected will be Ogmore By Sea and Southerndown.

The report put before councillors said: “Based on last year’s parking activities levels this fee change will increase car parking in the region of £60k. This will assist in meeting the budget savings/income increases for 2014/2015.”

A Barry Island resident, angry at motorists parking of cars on pavements near his home, said the situation would not assist those living on Barry Island.

He said: “More residents will have to walk in the road due to illegally parked cars. As usual the Vale of Glamorgan Council will do nothing about it.”

Barry Island Quasar owner, Mark Vockins branded the move “ridiculous”.

He said: “It should be free. We are trying to encourage businesses to the Island and visitors. A lot of people are parking in the coach bays. People won’t be happy with this price increase.”

Marco Zeraschi, whose family has been trading on the Island for more than half a decade, said motorists should be charged pay and display on a sliding scale to encourage visitors to legally park.

He said: “It’s still cheap compared to some places I have been, but I would much prefer pay and display. I was hoping coaches would be £5 to encourage them to stay here. If I was King of Barry Island it would all be free, but nothing is free anymore.

“The car parks were 80 percent full on a Sunday in March. What’s it going to be like in July?

“I understand the prices have got to go up, but why alienate the locals and short-term stay people?”

Baruc ward councillor Steffan Wiliam said, while it was important to encourage green transport options such as public transport and bicycle usage, there was no escaping the fact that visitors kit themselves with items they need out to spend a day at the resort and walking onto the Island would not always be practical.

Cllr Wiliam said: “We need to look at our parking provision and the things that are needed to improve parking for residents. There’s a need for a properly designed multi-storey car park that will compliment the Island.

“We need to address the fact that families bring their kitchen sinks with them and they are going to bring their cars.

“Whatever the price increase issue is, it’s important to enforce things to protect the residents.”

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