Infrastructure minister Chris Hazard has announced that on-street parking charges in Newry will increase from 40p to 60p per hour from Monday 20 February.

It’s an increase of 20p per hour meaning that it will now cost 50% more to park in many of the city’s estimated 440 on-street parking spaces.

Commenting on the change in tariffs in Newry as well as Belfast and Lisburn, Minister Hazzard said “On-street parking tariffs in Belfast have not increased since 2011 and have therefore not kept pace with inflation. Similarly, tariffs in Newry and Lisburn have not increased since 2009 and 2008.

“On-street parking provides a vital resource for shoppers and visitors and is an important support for the economic and social life of our towns and cities and for that reason I have limited these increases to the minimum possible.”

Outlining the concerns of members at the recent announcement, Mary Meehan, Chief Executive of Newry Chamber said “This is a 50% increase and could potentially put people of coming into the city centre. We need to concentrate on attracting people into city centres, rather than making money. There is also the issue with the overzealous enforcement by the redcoats here in Newry City Centre.  Our members have raised numerous complaints on the excessive issuing of fines and the lack of customer service approach”.

As a follow up, Newry Chamber will formally write to the Department requesting a formal review on the deployment of traffic wardens in the Newry City Centre area and to request a meeting with NSL Services which is contracted on behalf of the Department to carry out enforcement.

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