Row over seafront car park changes

PUBLISHED: 06:00 23 March 2006 | UPDATED: 09:02 24 May 2010

ONE of Weston's town centre car parks is in line for a makeover to make it more visitor friendly. North Somerset Council wants to spend thousands of pounds on the massive Melrose car park in the heart of the seafront. Part of the transformation will invol

ONE of Weston's town centre car parks is in line for a makeover to make it more visitor friendly.North Somerset Council wants to spend thousands of pounds on the massive Melrose car park in the heart of the seafront.Part of the transformation will involve demolishing the dilapidated garages at the back of the car park. But not everyone is happy with the idea.The tenants have been served notices to vacate the garages by the end of the month. One garage tenant, who did not want to be named, e-mailed the Weston & Somerset Mercury to say tenants have not been offered alternative parking, despite requests to the council. A planning application will be made next week to knock down the garages and replace them with public parking.North Somerset Council's destination manager Julia Stuckey said the Melrose car park is very well used in the summer and extra spaces are needed.She said: "The garages are in a poor state of repair and they either needed to be demolished and rebuilt or just demolished. For the money we were getting it wasn't worth rebuilding them. Seven of the 30 were used by private tenants."There is also a space behind the garage which is dark and it has encouraged antisocial behaviour."Midas approached the council as it is interested in renting the space taken up by the garages for nine to 12 months for storage and staff parking while work is being carried out on Knightstone Island.The firm says it will demolish the garages and replace them with a car park. The money the council was to spend on this could then be spent on car park improvements.Ms Stuckey added: "The council is just getting into the process of decriminalising parking, which usually involves parking meters. Residents' parking schemes may be provided when this happens which would help the garage tenants.

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