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FRUSTRATION HAS been voiced by elected representatives with the pace at which the update of the parking by-laws is progressing in the county.

A countywide parking review is underway in Clare, with a staff resource from the traffic section in place since the end of March. The work will examine existing by-laws and identifying areas where new by-laws may be required, the primary objective of the review “is to maximise the availability of public parking spaces,” administrative officer of the transportation section of Clare County Council, Liam O’Connor explained.

He revealed that it will be the second half of 2022 before the draft by-laws are finalised.

Presently parking by-laws are in place for Ennis, Kilrush, Kilkee, Lahinch and Doolin Pier. Any amendment will require the drafting of new by-laws which will be done in consultation with An Garda Síochána and the relevant Municipal District. This will then be followed by a statutory public consultation phase before being considered for adoption by the Council.

Cllr Shane Talty (FF) had sought an update on the review at a recent sitting of the West Clare Municipal District. “There are numerous changes needed in many towns. For example, reduce long-term on street parking, increased age friendly & disabled parking and regulation of campervans,” he said.

According to Cllr Talty, “money is being allowed to flow away” by the failure to have by-laws in place for car parks in certain parts of Clare. He felt it was “a pity” the review was not completed in advance of the 2022 season to boost the Council’s coffers. “Overnight campervans at various locations seem to be unregulated,” the Lahinch man observed.

Cathaoirleach of the West Clare MD, Cllr Cillian Murphy (FF) admitted he was “very frustrated with the pace” of the review. “It’s like a year has been set for this to be completed and no amount of urgency will speed this up. There are no parking by-laws on the main street of some towns which means somebody can park their car on a Friday evening and leave it until Monday morning. We need to manage our spaces much better to deliver an economic benefit”.

Kilrush based, Cllr Ian Lynch (IND) told his colleagues, “don’t lose sight of the purpose of the by-laws, their functionality is to make sure the parking works, I’m concerned revenue might take over”. Murphy responded, “Revenue is down the list on why we are doing, we can manage the place much better if we plan”.

 

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