Anger after the reduction of the Leiston car park by the East Suffolk council
Business and city leaders in east Suffolk are furious after a municipal parking lot has been reduced by 30 spaces.
The High Street car park in Leiston has recently been refurbished by East Suffolk Council.
However, since the end of the works, 30 parking spaces have been removed from the car park.
Wayne Burns, who runs the Leiston Film Theater, said he was frustrated with the changes.
“It affects all businesses in the city,” he said.
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“This is the boldness of the East Suffolk council. There was no consultation.”
Mr Burns said the theater had been a busy time after the release of the last James Bond film, but parking issues were already deterring people from returning.
“Some people say they won’t come back anymore,” he said.
Leiston City Council said it was “angry” at the changes that had been made and which it said were made without its consultation.
Writing on Facebook, the council said: “Leiston City Council is extremely upset and angry that 30 parking spaces have been removed from this parking lot without any consultation or notification to City Council, businesses or residents.
“This is totally unacceptable and we will work hard to find out why this has happened.
“Rest assured that Leiston City Council has written a very strong letter to the East Suffolk Council Head, insisting that these spaces are being reestablished and will not remain in abeyance until this is resolved.”
Norman Brooks, East Suffolk Council Transport Cabinet Member for Transport, said: “Following the resurfacing of the High Street car park in Leiston, we had the opportunity to improve the layout of the car park, the making it more efficient and safer for all users.
“We recognized that the parking lots were not wide enough for most modern vehicles and, as a result, larger parking areas were created to meet the growing demand for these vehicles. Inevitably this meant that we had to slightly reduce the number of available parking spaces, however, the quality and layout of the parking lot has been greatly improved and it can now comfortably accommodate larger vehicles.
“In addition, suitable spaces have also been provided for other road users, such as motorcyclists and cyclists, as well as walkways to ensure that all users can safely get to and from their vehicles.
“There is of course the right balance between meeting the demand for larger spaces and maximizing the number of spaces available, however, this work was necessary to improve accessibility for modern vehicles and other road users. . Previously, the parking lot was typically less than half full during regulated hours and with other parking lots within walking distance, there are plenty of options available during peak hours.