Is this a roundabout way of stopping illegal parking near Ipswich Hospital?
- Credit: Gregg Brown
Frustrated residents living near Ipswich Hospital have held a meeting with MP Sandy Martin in a bid to ease the problem of parking problems near their homes.
Mr Martin met a group of residents in Glenavon Road yesterday just days after the county council painted more yellow lines in the “Australia estate” on the opposite side of Heath Road from the hospital.
And residents of Melbourne Road on the Australia estate near Ipswich Hospital were left bemused after yellow lines were painted around a small roundabout at one corner of the road.
Hospital managers said they were trying to ease the parking problems for staff, patients, and visitors to the site.
Mr Martin was called in by Rod Lawrence who said that residents living near the hospital were growing increasingly frustrated by the number of cars parking outside their homes.
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Some people had found themselves unable to leave their homes after finding that visitors or hospital staff had effectively blocked their driveways.
There had recently been new yellow lines painted which had been welcomed by some – although on the other side of the hospital residents in Goring Road had been irritated to see lines painted.
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Mr Lawrence said: “We really do need to have some residents’ parking permits for here – and at a reasonable price. Even having signs up would put off a lot of the people who park here.”
He was not critical of the staff: “Some of them pay for parking permits but then can’t find anywhere to park. And then there are visitors to the hospital who cannot find anywhere to park. They should not have expanded the hospital without building a multi-storey car park there.”
The new lines included a pair of yellow lines around a roundabout that provides access to a number of drives rather than a road on Melbourne Road – but it still looks odd.
County council cabinet member for Ipswich Paul West was surprised by these lines. He said: “We did ask for new yellow lines to try to ease problems on those roads, especially at corners. We will see how this works – but I hadn’t really expected that!”
But Mr Lawrence was happy. He said: “There have been times when cars have parked on the roundabout, with those lines they could now be ticketed by parking enforcement officers.”
A spokeswoman for the hospital said an extra 250 temporary car parking spaces should be created soon.
Car parking permits were sold to staff who lived more than two miles from the hospital – and there was always room for them to use a hospital park, although not necessarily in one nearest the main site.
Mr Martin said he was listening to the concerns of residents – but felt there was a deeper problem underlying the issue.
He said: “If you have a hospital, or any other major building like this, you have to look at how people are going to access it.
“There will never be enough room for everyone to reach the hospital by private car and there does need to be a careful look at encouraging people to use other ways of reaching Heath Road.”