Three New Plymouth businessmen have forced a council turnaround after they were inadequately consulted on parking restrictions.
Burger Fuel owner Brooke Wolfe, Phil Dickey of BTW and Neil Penno of TSH took the New Plymouth District Council's monitoring committee to task last night for proposed changes to parking spaces in front of their Eliot St businesses.
All said they had not been adequately consulted on the changes and were not happy with the proposals.
"I hadn't been aware there was going to be any changes until the Daily News told me," Mr Wolfe said.
"The council don't let you know. Where do they tell you what is happening?"
The burger franchise owner said the proposal to restrict parking in front of his shop between 7am and 7pm could have cost him as much as 80 per cent of his weekly trade as most of his customers came between 5pm and 8pm.
Despite this potential impact he claimed a consultant acting for the council visited his business just once and only for a few minutes.
Mr Dickey said consultation about the possible loss of five car parks near his Eliot St business was also far below what he expected.
"Even if we had been left with a package so we knew what was going on - but there was no technical information or written material provided," he said.
Councillors agreed the situation seemed a bit slack and Phil Quinney, reputedly a not infrequent Burger Fuel customer, moved to stop the proposed changes.
"I am very concerned the consultation process in terms of full and frank discussion with those parties doesn't appear to be anywhere as adequate as it should be," he said.
In defence, council roading boss Max Aves said there had been a degree of consultation. "Obviously, through the submissions we have heard today, it hasn't fulfilled the expectations of the parties and we take that on board," he said.
Parking in front of Burger Fuel will now be prohibited between 7am and 10am and from 2pm till 5pm rather than from 7am till 7pm, for a six-month trial. Parking is currently restricted from 7am till noon. Plans for the other parks will be depend on further consultation.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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