TRAFFIC chiefs are expecting hundreds of applications for parking permits ahead of a new scheme aimed at relieving car-clogged streets.
As reported in the Echo, a new parking management scheme has finally been approved for 12 streets around Sunderland Royal Hospital.
Now more than 350 households have been invited to apply for parking permits as traffic chiefs prepare to launch the scheme on December 1. Businesses in the area can also apply for permits.
Council leader Paul Watson, who also represents Pallion ward which is in one of the parking zones, said: “This is a long-running issue and in drawing up the scheme the city council has worked very closely with residents.
“I believe we have now got a manageable and balanced scheme for the streets most affected by this long-running issue.”
The Echo reported last week how Sunderland City Council’s planning and highways committee dismissed objections from some residents and hospital staff to approve the parking scheme.
It came after a vote last year where a majority of residents in the 12 streets backed an idea for a scheme to ease parking problems.
Residents and councillors had called for years for a solution to the problem – created by overspill from the hospital site, which does not have enough spaces to cater for all staff, patients and visitors.
Restrictions will apply in the streets zone from Monday to Friday, 10am to 11am and 2pm to 3pm.
This is aimed at deterring hospital staff from parking in the streets, as they will not be able to park there all day. It will also prevent afternoon visitors from parking in residential streets.
Only vehicles displaying a valid parking permit, voucher or valid Blue Badge are entitled to park during the restricted times.
Any driver ignoring these restrictions will be given a parking ticket.
Susan Adamson, of St Gabriel’s Estate, who represents Barnes, Pallion and Millfield Residents’ Association, said: “We’re all very hopeful and keen to see the scheme work and help settle the ongoing parking problem here.
“We look forward to the scheme being extended to include further households in the future and will continue to work with the council to achieve these aims.”
Residents in streets who voted against the scheme, and those further from the hospital, are concerned the parking problems will simply transfer to their doorsteps.
The council says these could be included in a future expansion of the scheme if residents agree.