Residents along a stretch of Aubrey Road are currently embroiled in parking battle with council over the sudden disappearance of all their on-street parking between Anderson Road and Kings Drive.
According to the Land Development and Engineering Code of Practice, “For a residential subdivision, where physically possible the minimum on-street parking provision will be one car park per residential unit/lot (based on permitted density).”
Callum Stevenson, who has helped coordinate the residents’ response, said, “I would summarise that this is saying when the Aubrey Heights subdivison and the Wanaka Heights subdivision were created, Aubrey Road was classed as our ‘one on-street carpark’ so as part of our consent process we are allowed, even entitled to one on-street carpark per dwelling.”
“With the development of Wanaka Heights and the addition of 20-plus residential properties all with driveways accessed from Aubrey Road, this issue of where visitors will park will be exacerbated. What we are asking of council is to return to us, the residents of Aubrey Road, some form of visitor parking,” he said.
The changes were implemented due to this stretch of road being very busy with children from both Holy Family and Wanaka Primary cycling, scooting and walking to and from school. With cars densely packed on both sides of the road it was hazardous for children—something Stevenson understands and is equally concerned about.
“We had no issue with the cycleway and safety of school children. [But the] design, implementation and process was inadequate and we even suggested some alternatives to show we were happy to work with council and find an amicable outcome to retain them.”
The Aubrey Road Residents Association (ARRA) put suggestions to council that there only needs to be a cycleway on one side of the road, not both, and perhaps one side of Aubrey Road could return to visitor parking. They also contend that whilst taking away all visitor parking for the entire stretch may be classified as “minor improvement” from council’s point of view because it doesn’t cost much to paint some lines, the impact on residents is “significant” and is having a negative impact on the quality of their lives.
QLDC however, doesn’t agree with the ARRA assessment. “The council is not obliged to provide on-street parking in this situation,” said Rebecca Pitts, senior communications advisor. “It is not uncommon for there to be no on-street parking on main routes and since the changes were implemented, there has been a noticeable safety improvement in that area for both motorists and cyclists.
“It’s a balancing act and in the long term we will continue the conversations and consider long-term solutions to ensure the safety of all road users and address the concerns of those living there.”