‘Bordering on lunacy’

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"Farcical" . . . Dunedin City Pharmacy retail manager Leo Li and owner Debbie Young want the Dunedin City Council to change the designation of a parking area in Princes St. PHOTO: SHAWN MCAVINUE

A parking space designated for cruise ship shuttles outside a busy business is “bordering on lunacy”, a Dunedin pharmacy owner says.

But the Dunedin City Council says it could be open to other vehicles sharing the space.

Dunedin City Pharmacy owner Debbie Young said she wants the council to allow her customers to use a parking area outside her shop in Princes St.

The area used to be a regular bus stop but was decommissioned when the bus hub was opened.

About three weeks ago, electronic parking signs were installed, signalling only cruise ship shuttles could park in the area for up to 20 minutes.

“It’s not serving Dunedin residents at all,” Ms Young said.

“It’s farcical.”

She had never seen a shuttle park in the space since the electronic signs were installed.

“I don’t understand why these parks are just sitting empty all the time, when they could be being used by the sick and the disabled.”

One of her customers used the parking space last week and was issued a $60 parking ticket, she said. About 20 customers visited her business daily to collect prescriptions and found it difficult to get a park.

“It’s bordering on lunacy.”

She wanted the 20-minute restriction to stay but for all vehicles to be able to use the space.

Council acting transport group manager Nick Sargent said the parking area – including spaces outside the pharmacy, Community Gallery and Night ‘n Day – once included two bus spaces, one authorised vehicle only space, two P5 (five-minute parking) spaces and a short bus space.

Parking changes to the area were adopted in August and were being implemented but weather had held up line marking.

The changes allowed for three bus spaces, one authorised vehicle space and two P5 spaces.

More P5 spaces were available to motorists around the corner outside the Dunedin Public Art Gallery, he said.

The council decided it was appropriate to designate the spaces outside the pharmacy for the use of cruise ship shuttle buses so cruise passengers could be dropped off to visit the art gallery in the upper Octagon.

The designation of the parking area outside the pharmacy could change, he said.

“We agree it would be a good idea to use this space flexibly and intend to present a variable designation for these spaces at a future traffic and bylaw sub-committee meeting.

“We have tried this approach in Moray Pl and it worked well.”