Local Labor MPs have called on the State Government to acknowledge that the region’s infrastructure is at breaking point and to act to improve access for locals.
According to Central Coast Labor, one in four Central Coast residents travels out of the area for work every day, but due to poor access and parking at major train stations on the Coast, commuters are being forced to travel to northern Sydney to find a parking spot.
“The Parliamentary Secretary, Mr Scott MacDonald, conceded that a commuter car parking shortage is a ‘big pressure point’, but his government has done nothing in six years,” said Member for Wyong, Mr David Harris.
“The Government needs to have a plan for the Central Coast and how they are going to better the lives of Central Coast commuters,” Mr Harris said.
Member for The Entrance, Mr David Mehan, added his voice to the fray, calling on the NSW Government to address the infrastructure issue in time for the region’s heralded population boom.
“The NSW Government needs to provide the infrastructure to support the growing population on the Central Coast and meet the increasing need for more parking.
“In its new train timetable, the government has not added any extra services to the Central Coast Line, despite trains being packed to the brim, and they’re ignoring our need for more commuter parking.
“Parking has been removed from Lisarow Station due to the widening of Pacific Hwy, forcing more passengers onto the already packed M1 or into the full Gosford or Tuggerah car parks,” Mr Mehan said.
The call comes after Hornsby Mayor, Mr Phillip Ruddock, ignited a heated debate between Central Coast commuters and Hornsby Shire residents after announcing that he was looking into new parking restrictions aimed at Coast commuters making the trip to Sydney’s outskirts to park their car before continuing on the train to the city proper for work.
Mr Ruddock said it was a matter of fairness and that Central Coast commuters were continually denying actual residents of parking spots in and around Hornsby Shire stations.
Mr Ruddock also questioned whether or not penny pinching Coast residents were making the trip to stations like Berowra and Hornsby because train fares were cheaper.
Mr Ruddock said the impact on Hornsby locals was so great, that Hornsby Shire was considering imposing charges on non-residents who take up the Shire’s valuable commuter parking.
Media release, Nov 22
David Harris, Member for Wyong
David Mehan, Member for The Entrance