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Brunswick Heads' paid parking fury

CAFE FURY: Ben, from the Terrace Espresso Bar, Torakina Cafe owner Anthony Kerrison, Footbridge Cafe manager Bea Adalian and Dolphin Cafe owner Gary Deller are in furious agreement against paid parking.
CAFE FURY: Ben, from the Terrace Espresso Bar, Torakina Cafe owner Anthony Kerrison, Footbridge Cafe manager Bea Adalian and Dolphin Cafe owner Gary Deller are in furious agreement against paid parking. Christian Morrow

BRUNSWICK Heads Chamber of Commerce is taking up a notch its campaign against paid parking.

Chamber president Zac Tooth said local residents, small business owners, employees and customers are taking to social media in a groundswell of opposition to paid parking.

Owner/manager of Torakina Cafe Gary Deller does not believe the council will raise the amount of revenue it predicts from any paid parking scheme.

"About 90 % of the cars parked out the front of our cafes and shops are locals who will all have resident parking,” he said.

"This will definitely cost jobs if trade goes down by 40% as I believe it did in Byron.

" I will have to cut staff numbers from seven to three and work full-time in the cafe myself.

"Everyone is angry at the way council is attempting to impose paid parking on their village,” Mr Tooth said.

"Threatened with a significant downturn in trade if paid parking is introduced, they are facing the fight of their lives.”

"Of our businesses, 23.6% are sole traders and most couldn't withstand a significant drop in trade.

The remaining businesses employ more than 900 locals between them, so we are talking about a dramatic impact.

"It should never have come to this. Council's own independent parking strategy did not recommend the introduction of paid parking.

"Why are councillors going against their own advice?”

"It's only the day trippers that will be caught in the paid parking net.

"But, with paid parking proposed only in the CBD block, it's easy to predict they will simply avoid the meters and park in the adjacent blocks - in our residential areas.

"Paid parking won't be the cash cow council expects.

"There is certainly a lot of angst in Brunswick at the moment and the animosity towards council is growing daily.

"We met with the mayor last Friday but unfortunately he rejected our request to follow the council's own parking strategy, which is to change the parking layout first and only consider paid parking down the track if supported by hard data.

"We are still hopeful the other eight councillors will understand what is at stake for our village and decide to drop the idea of paid parking in Bruns, just as they decided for Mullumbimby,” Mr Tooth said.

Topics:  brunswick heads byron shire council paid parking


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