Invitation to the Council Workshop on the Parking Issues- and community repsonse

Well gangsters…..It’s finally arrived. Our invitation to the Council Workshop on the Parking Issues.
Please read through and note that we will have limited time for our presentation.
The time has come to now produce positive achievable solutions for them to work on. We already have some very positive suggestions but put your thinking caps on and let’s show them we are not only critics….but also willing to be pro active toward genuine change.


COMMUNITY RESPONSES:

“I think we all want the same thing. Just to be able to park our cars safely but at the same time have it safe for pedestrians. Let us put 2 wheels up on the verge as long as not parking on the concrete footpath and future developments to to have wider streets and deeper blocks so people can park on the driveways without being outside the boundary.
I drove down Spinnaker Blvd the other day and thought this is how streets should be. Wide enough for cars to travel safely each way and then ample parking room on both sides of the road. Good old ”

“Ideally we should‘nt have to worry about parking on our own driveways, up to the boundary, as long as we are not blocking the footpath for pedestrians..”

“So let me get this right, they want our submission, 14 days before the event, giving us only two weeks to prepare, then they have our ideas and concerns and therefore have two weeks to prepare counter arguments to our proposal. Am I being cynical?”

“I wish all of you on this site the very best of good fortune, and remember stick to your subject matter, don’t get side tracked by being too negative, and the best question you could ask of them is, ” Compared to What?””

“I have just researched the width of a Land Cruiser, and a Fire Truck and allowing for minimum safe clearance, the road needs to be 7 meters wide. So I think we should be pushing for exemptions to all streets under the minimum for safety sake. A point I’ll be pushing strongly for.”

“Yes Hubby has a land cruiser so he has to use the driveway and the caravan takes the other side so my little car is 2 wheels up on the gutter. Not one blade of grass hits my tyres because Hubby got done because a spindly weed was touching his tyre so they deemed him to be parking on the grass 🙄”

They are only after a brief outline of what the proposals are. Maybe we need to work on mutual proposals to put to them and then do our homework over the next two weeks on the pro’s and con’s of each one. The first proposal we need to work on is the issue of whether the Council or developers should widen the parking sections of road or allow verge parking for residents. The second proposal should address residents being able to park in their driveways allowing enough room to open the garage doors and still not blocking the footpath area in these new estates that are having the problems. As Council is limited by state law with these issues we all need to seek the best solution. The Council has said they couldn’t stop the size of the roads because of state law. Was the option of parking for two cars for every residence on the roadside even considered in court when fighting about the road size? Council should of ensured parking for all of the residents and their visitors no matter what the road size. It appears Council failed to argue these issues in the land court with the developers so will now have to review the whole planning scheme.

“My question to the council is where do u expect us to park if we can’t park in the driveway within the boundaries/nose or tail past mail box and can’t safely park on road”
” I think the council are the ones that need to be coming up with some ideas. There have been enough instances of where people have been booked and clearly the fine has been nothing short of ridiculous- breaking a law yes but any care or common sense utilised by the council officers booking these cars, trailers etc – none whatsoever. As far as I’m concerned there really is only one solution and that is to allow some parking on nature strips. Also relax the enforcement of the existing laws. For example when we received our first fine for parking on the nature strip my partners car actually had a flat battery. Rather than leave it on the road where we thought it would be dangerous it was left parked on the nature strip, not impeding anyone walking by or dangerous to anyone. When we appealed the fine we were asked to provide the receipt for the battery which of course my partner could not find. So in these cases we ask the council to be fair and reasonable.”
“The problem with verges is parking on them is illegal under state law. So we need the changes to come from the enforcement section to only issue fines as a last resort. The Council should liase with the land owners first to try and rectify the problem. Ultimately the developers should be forced to fix the problem they created but Council has found a cash cow that it is happy to maintain so is happy to just go with the flow so to speak. The Council are that busy enforcing this that they are putting poorly qualified criminals out on the streets to issue tickets just to keep the revenue flowing. This isn’t helping but at least it is getting us all together to demand changes.”

“with regard to the language used in this letter. There is a lot of “lawful” and “unlawful” innuendo but I believe the crux of it is in the 2nd to last paragraph of the letter which states:

>> enable Council to ensure it determines a best practice approach to parking management on road verges that reflects the best interests of our region, COMPLIES WITH THE STATE GOVERNMENT AND COUNCIL “REGULATORY” FRAMEWORK and supports the ongoing safety of the local community.<<

Very easy to miss but the literal meaning of this is a complete contradiction in terms because it simply isn’t possible to satisfy all these things in existing suburban developments under existing legislation. Even their last bullet point asks if we have any suggestions for road verge parking that are “lawful” and “appropriate”.

The only way to fix the existing situation IMHO, is to work around the regulations as opposed to complying with them. And if the Council isn’t willing to discuss this, then they are wasting our time and ratepayer’s money.

In terms of future developments, I think it’s been well detailed already… roads need to be wider as per Colin’s measurements. I can see a game of “pass the buck” going on here between Developers, Council and the State Govt. and this cannot be allowed.

So my suggestions are as follows and may add more as they come to mind…

1. We thank (by name?) those Councillors who are actually taking an active interest and representing their constituents concerns in this matter.

2. Request Council work around existing regulations by putting in place an amnesty on verge parking in suburbs where the road is less than 7 metres in width – as per Colin’s suggestion. There can be reasonable distances put in place ie. vehicles can’t infringe on the verge any more than 1 metre thereby still allowing ample room for foot traffic. (That is just an example. What is reasonable would have to be decided by concensus).

3. Once again in existing suburban developments with streets of less than 7 metres, an amnesty must be given allowing parking in driveways with as above – ie. a 1 metre(?) encroachment onto the verge.

4. No future “high-density” suburban development approvals until the appropriate measures have been taken to ensure roads in these developments are no less than 7 metres wide. No side-stepping and passing the buck. Stocklands definitely has a part to play in this and the part they seem to be playing best is “pass the buck” especially when we now know they have the choice to increase road widths and DON’T..

5. No more using parking fines as revenue raising as we all know this is happening. Queensland’s frontline cops have called for an end to sneaky covert speed cameras which they say the public see as simply cash cows for the State Government and do nothing to reduce the road toll. Our Councillors need to follow suit with the parking issues and stand up with us on this as I don’t believe there is any evidence to suggest public safety is positively affected by these parking fines. In fact it appears to be quite the opposite with public safety being severely compromised.

I’m sure there are other things that I may think of later but in my mind, these are the most pressing.”

“I think I articulated my thoughts previously on here but summed-up as… hopefully a workable compromise for the community and for Council (noting Council are the community and really should reflect our wishes on this topic) – Where streets are so narrow that parking fully on the roadway poses an unacceptable risk to other traffic, emergency vehicles or other members of the community, an allowance should be made to permit partial parking on the verge so as to keep the roadway as clear and navigable as possible. Such partial parking would mean the vehicle is not parked entirely on the verge, but neither is it parked entirely on the roadway. Two wheels on each.

My experience navigating fire appliances around urban streets suggests that any road less than 6 metres in width with cars fully parked on the roadway poses an unacceptable hazard to personnel and the general public and that parking on the verge should be permitted.”

Just to qualify… I left the emergency services quite some time ago, but some things don’t change… responding to a car accident or house fire in a 16+ ton fire appliance requires Councils and other authorities to ensure roadways are managed for the purposes for which they were designed… to allow clear and unobstructed vehicle access. Its also incumbent on these authorities to test and as necessary amend any practices counter to this objective. Whatever the State law in this regard Council has a choice… it can prosecute and thereby make our roads less safe, or it can waive its right to prosecute and thereby improve the safety of all road users and by default, those who rely on our emergency services for a potentially life-saving response..”
“Now…. the Councillors are not dumbarses… if we have all come up with possible solutions then believe me, they have discussed exactly those solutions already and have decided that they would prefer to use the law to create a revenue stream instead.”

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