Revealed: The Coalisland parking restriction plans that councillors, traders and the Road Service cannot agree on

Special report: These are the controversial proposals to bring parking restrictions to Coalisland that have caused tensions between traders, councillors and the Road Service.

  • Disabled bays, limited waiting areas and new double-yellow lines
  • Road Service parking surveys reveal third of Cornmill spaces left unused
  • Numerous photos showing poor parking taken by Road Service

Coalisland has been at the centre of heated debate after it emerged that zero parking tickets have been issued in the town in the past four years.

Despite the lack of penalties, motorists in many other towns of a similar size and smaller across the north have received parking tickets.

The Department for Regional Development (DRD) has been accused by an MLA of treating Coalisland as a “privileged town” by failing to issue tickets.

But traders have hit back, saying there is no need for traffic wardens in the town amid fears that parking restrictions could affect business.

At a meeting held in the town in April, the Road Service presented proposals for new parking restrictions.

But the plans were left in disarray after the tense talks involving councillors, traders and the Coalisland Regeneration group ended without agreement.

Coalisland Post can today reveal those controversial proposals – as well as details of parking surveys carried out by the Road Service.

The proposed parking restrictions for Coalisland

The Road Service also took numerous pictures showing examples of poor parking across Coalisland town centre.

The parking restriction proposals include new disabled bays and limited waiting times along Main Street and part of the Dungannon Road.

But the plans were shelved after some argued that new restrictions were unacceptable, claiming that there are too few parking spaces in Coalisland.

The Road Service said it has no plans to provide any additional parking in the town.

Notes from a Road Service parking survey

However, two parking surveys carried out by the Road Service suggest dozens of spaces are regularly available in the Cornmill car park.

On Tuesday April 1, a Road Service officer noted that 35 out of the 112 spaces were vacant, meaning 69% were occupied.

And on Thursday March 27 there were 46 spaces available – an occupancy rate of 59%.

The officer also made several observations about parking in the town.

On both occasions it was noted that the zig-zag markings next to the pelican crossing were “constantly blocked”.

Photos taken by the Road Service

The officer wrote that some vehicles in the Cornmill car park were “taking up more than one space” and that there is no disabled parking available.

Photographs taken by the Road Service officer show several cars and lorries parking on top of footpaths, leaving pedestrians little room to walk past.

The details have emerged as Coalisland Post readers continue to highlight examples of poor parking in the town through our Facebook page.

One driver told how a motorist reversed into his parked car – and then drove off without checking for damage.

The DRD has said “further discussion will be required before conclusions are reached” on parking restrictions for Coalisland.

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