8 Nov 2016

Queenstown residents want end to dangerous parking

9:00 am on 8 November 2016

Queenstown residents who live near the town's airport are fed up with droves of people parking alongside a state highway and leaving their cars for days.

Around 60 residents turned out to a meeting on Saturday aimed at coming up with a solution.

Frankton Community Association chairperson Glyn Lewers said residents thought it was an eyesore.

"They're not happy with how it looks, it's a tourist town and it's pretty much the first thing you see when you get off the plane."

Mr Lewers said the parking along the highway had become worse in the past few months as people had started angle parking beside the road.

Cars were now backing out into oncoming traffic, which was an accident waiting to happen, he said.

Queenstown's local MP, National's Todd Barclay, said he had been trying to get the New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) to recognise the scale of the problem.

"There are a couple of hundred vehicles that are parked along the roadside now."

He said he wrote to NZTA and the airport a few months ago, and they conducted surveys that showed airport users were parking for an average of four days.

Mr Barclay organised Saturday's meeting and will gather signatures for a petition to NZTA, asking it to speed up work in the area.

The agency is planning to bring make the road double-laned will stop people from being able to park.

But the work will not be completed for four to five years, and Mr Barclay said it needed to be done sooner to correspond with the widening of Kawarau Bridge at the end of that road.

NZTA southern regional director Jim Harland said the agency would consider bringing forward the work, but for now there needed to be an immediate solution to the problem of angle parking.

Mr Harland said signs prohibiting angle parking would be in place by early December.

Queenstown Airport said it planned to have about 50 more parks available by the end of this month, which it hopes will help alleviate the issue.

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