Northern Ireland news

Residents parking schemes to be revived at locations across Northern Ireland

Residents-only parking schemes are to be revived by the Department for Infrastructure. Picture by Hugh Russell
John Monaghan

RESIDENT-only parking schemes are being revived with a view to being rolled out at locations across the north.

Similar schemes have previously been attempted and abandoned due to community opposition over the past decade.

However, Infrastructure Minister Chris Hazzard has now said that his department is "currently developing a number of residents' parking schemes" in Belfast, Derry and Antrim.

The minister has indicated that in most cases, the scheme will not be free due to "budgetary constraints", with residents facing a possible £30 charge for a permit.

Mr Hazzard said: "The exception to this being any scheme lying either wholly or partially in a Neighbourhood Renewal Area (as defined by the Department for Communities) which will be exempt from the permit charge.

"Where a charge is levied, this has been set at £30 per resident’s permit and is intended to cover the cost of the scheme design and the enforcement needed to stop others from outside the area parking there."

The Irish News reported last year that since 2005 the Department for Regional Development (DRD) had spent approximately £303,000 on consultancy costs associated with parking schemes.

Ten schemes, eight of which were in Belfast, had been proposed but ran into difficulties.

In 2014, concern over city centre workers leaving their cars came to a head in the Markets area of south Belfast when drivers were stopped from entering streets.

Residents of Carrick Hill in north Belfast launched a campaign in 2010 to stop commuters using the area as a 'free car park'.

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