New Hatfield car park will 'ease congestion'

A NEW car park costing more than half-a-million pounds ""will ease congestion"" a councillor has said. Alan Franey hopes the free-to-use facility in Lemsford Road, Hatfield, will be worthwhile to those who currently park on the main street. He said the �5

A NEW car park costing more than half-a-million pounds "will ease congestion" a councillor has said.

Alan Franey hopes the free-to-use facility in Lemsford Road, Hatfield, will be worthwhile to those who currently park on the main street.

He said the �560,000 project, given the thumbs-up by Welwyn Hatfield Council earlier this month, will be most welcome news to residents.

"I am pleased the site will be developed and residents of Hatfield will once again have the use of a surface car park," said Cllr Franey.


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"It will relieve some of the parking congestion on Lemsford Road, both near the car park and at the opposite end of the road, where problems with parking have increased."

There will be enough room to accommodate 150 vehicles at the car park, which was originally delayed in 2007 after the adjacent block of flats burned down.

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Building work is due to take place in the summer and be completed by the end of the year.

Even though �560,000 has been allocated from the council's capital budget for the work, the exact amount could be lowered due to a tender process.

A council spokeswoman said: "It's possible the entire sum may not be needed.

"The tender process is there to enable the council to allocate the work to the best team possible balanced against a reasonable price."

She added: "Our capital budget represents the council's investment in local services and assets.

"We pay for this spending using the money we receive from the sale of some of our assets, from the receipt of government grants and other contributions.

"This spending is not paid for from the council tax and is not from developers."

When asked if there will be a charge for parking, the spokeswoman replied: "There are no plans to charge for using the Lemsford Road car park."

Parking control schemes in Hatfield, for example, double yellow lines, are due to be reviewed in line with town centre redevelopment.

* What do you think? During the economic downturn should Welwyn Hatfield Council be spending more than half-a-million pounds on a car park or should that money be put to better use? Email naiomimadden@whtimes.co.uk

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