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Auckland Council loses first round on bid to ban parking on berms

Author
NZ Herald,
Section
Auckland,
Publish Date
Sunday, 7 July 2019, 4:17PM
Provincial councils have spoken up at the Local Government New Zealand conference against a proposed ban on parking on berms. (Photo / NZ Herald)
Provincial councils have spoken up at the Local Government New Zealand conference against a proposed ban on parking on berms. (Photo / NZ Herald)

Auckland Council has failed to get support from other councils for a law change to ban parking on berms.

Waitemata Local Board chairwoman Pippa Coom has tweeted that a remit in support of the ban at the Local Government New Zealand(LGNZ) conference today has been lost, with provincial councils speaking against it.

The loss is a blow for supporters of the ban in Auckland, which include Mayor Phil Goff and Auckland Transport(AT), but there is nothing to stop them lobbying Government directly for a law change.

AT is campaigning for a law change allowing it to fine people for parking on grass roadside berms that don't have "no parking" signs.

AT's Traffic Bylaw prohibits parking on grass berms. But the Land Transport Act rules mean "no parking" signs must be installed every 100m to enforce the ban.

Coom, on behalf of the council, sought support at the LGNZ conference in Wellington conference to lobby central Government for a law change.

Coom told the Herald this week that parking on berms could damage underground utilities, create safety issues for footpath users and rip up the grass, preventing berms acting in their primary capacities to soak up and filter stormwater.

"If parking is an issue, then that needs to be addressed. Parking on berms should not be a solution.

"And having to install signs at 100m intervals on a street to enforce the rules is just farcical.

"We are seeking legislation change to clarify the rules to allow councils to prohibit parking on berms in urban areas if they choose."

Between August 2016 and August 2018, AT received 840 safety complaints from the public about berm parking.

The Automobile Association opposes any blanket ban.

Spokesman Mark Stockdale said sweeping prohibitions would create problems for Kiwi car owners.

"At the moment parking on berms is very accepted in some areas. Most people across the country have to maintain and mow their berms, so there is an expectation you can park on them if needed, such as when you have extra guests for birthday parties, family gatherings or sports events," he said.

 

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