IF you are of the belief that it is okay to ignore parking meters and pull over anywhere you want in the Ipswich CBD you need to do a quick rethink.
Council’s parking infringement team has been hot on the prowl and the latest figures reveal in the quieter months of July-August-November they booked more than 43 drivers every weekday hitting them with $312,597 in fines.
The statistic is made even more amazing as the council’s parking inspectors number just two.
FRUSTRATED Ipswich residents breaking the rules in their search for a rare parking spot in the CBD have been smacked by council’s parking officers with thousands of dollars in fines.
The latest figures released reveal that in the quieter months of July-August-September last year council issued 2800 infringement notices totalling $312,597.
Council was asked for a breakdown on the figures to reveal just how many of these fines related to the CBD, but could not provide the information because “it would take significant research” .
With the majority of parking meters, no stopping and no standing zones located in the CBD it is more than reasonable to say the centre of Ipswich is the hot spot for penalties.
The charity group, Ipswich Assist, was amongst those caught in the crackdown as they were unloading food from one of their vans for needy families prior to Christmas.
The figures reveal that the council’s infringement team has been extremely busy policing parking, particularly as they number just two.
The two officers don’t just operate on foot checking meters, they also drive around in a vehicle equipped with cameras scanning for anyone parking illegally.
The breakdown for the September quarter revealed the parking officers booked 573 drivers for parking over the permitted time, 371 for unpaid meter parking, 305 for pulling over in a no stopping area, 287 drivers for stopping longer than two minutes in a loading zone, 264 for stopping on a yellow line, 239 for stopping on a footpath, 129 for stopping in a bus zone and 92 for not parking parallel.
Council does operate a car park under the Nicholas Street Mall which offers three hours free parking, however, for the most part it is always less than a quarter full and closes at 11pm.
It can only be assumed that most deem the carpark as a difficult uphill walk and too far away from the majority of shops and businesses that line Brisbane Street.
Our story on the carpark charges last year revealed that council was undertaking a review of car parking in the CBD.
Changes to parking won’t be happening for some time however, with council saying that it won’t even have a draft of the review until next month.