close
close
City hall backs off ‘frustrating’ parking rule after residents complain of m fines

City hall backs off ‘frustrating’ parking rule after residents complain of $2m fines

City hall backs off ‘frustrating’ parking rule after residents complain of m fines

In a rare victory for locals, a major council has reversed its decision to fine drivers for parking on the pavement in narrow streets, something they say they were forced to do so as not to restrict oncoming traffic.

Liverpool City Council in south-west Sydney has reportedly collected $2 million in fines for parking violations, but now rangers have been “instructed not to fine drivers who park on flush kerbs”, formalising “what is already common practice” in the area.

Residents living near the Horningsea Park housing estates in Liverpool, southwest of Sydney, say the streets are so narrow that drivers have to decide whether to park on the pavement and pay a $302 fine or restrict the flow of traffic.

The densely populated area, where some houses have occupants with multiple vehicles, means there are even fewer parking spaces available than usual. They say it simply “makes life easier” to park on the pavement and have previously criticised the council for issuing hefty fines.

A car on the pavement of a street near the Horningsea Park housing complex in Liverpool, southwest of Sydney.A car on the pavement of a street near the Horningsea Park housing complex in Liverpool, southwest of Sydney.

The streets behind the Horningsea Park housing estates in Liverpool are very narrow. Source: 9News

Liverpool Mayor Ned Mannoun has responded to the complaints, saying that “council rangers stopped enforcing the rules when a draft policy was launched in October” and that “the arrangement has been working successfully ever since”.

“The decision also makes it easier to navigate narrow streets, especially for emergency vehicles and other service vehicles (such as grocery delivery trucks),” Mannoun told Yahoo News Australia. Over the years, he said, the state government has allowed developers to build increasingly narrow streets.

“This is the council’s solution to the problem. The policy only applies to streets that have rounded curbs. If the street has traditional curbs, the fine will be applied.”

However, the policy only applies to council rangers, Mannoun warned, explaining that Transport for NSW and NSW Police can still “fine you for half-parking”, although he implored them to “show some discretion, especially in residential areas”.

The situation has seen the council record more than $2.4 million in revenue over the past 12 months, 9 News reported, adding to residents’ “frustration”.

“We have to park a bit on the nature strip to make our lives easier,” said Asaad Ibrraheem.

“People get frustrated, they get road rage and all that,” added resident Roland Vassallo.

Cars parked at an angle in Graceville, which is prohibited by the council. Cars parked at an angle in Graceville, which is prohibited by the council.

Residents in Brisbane’s Graceville are fighting a city rule that bans corner parking and encourages drivers to parallel park, even though it means fewer cars can fit along the street. Source: 9 News

Other Sydney councils are facing similar problems. Blacktown council, for example, said it issues warnings to drivers who park on the pavement around Rouse Hill and then fines repeat offenders.

They say they asked the previous NSW government to change driving rules in light of the rapid increase in new developments, but those efforts proved fruitless. In the city’s Inner West, rangers are encouraged to exercise discretion when ticketing vehicles on narrow streets.

Meanwhile, in Queensland, an entire street was recently fined for parking alongside the curb rather than parallel to it, as required by the council. The community of Graceville is urging its local council to use common sense and remove rules that prohibit drivers from parking at an angle along the streets of a suburb – a practice they claim allows more cars to enter the busy area, but is strictly prohibited by authorities.

Nearly 90 motorists were fined $154 for parking perpendicular to the kerb on Brisbane’s Graceville streets earlier this year, when the council said they should have parked parallel, even though it meant fewer cars could enter the area.

Do you have any tips for telling a story? Email: [email protected].

You can also follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Tik Tok, Twitter and Youtube.