‘Loss of parking spaces could close us’ – Green Hut owner
CREATING a zebra crossing on the main road in St Martin’s will strangle local businesses, traders have said.
They are angry and worried they would lose customers if the crossing was installed on Grande Rue, amid concerns that the loss of four parking spaces for its installation would result in less foot traffic as customers would have nowhere to park.
Green Hut sandwich shop owner Clint McGrath said his business would be next to the new crossing, and said the whole community would be affected if more spaces were lost.
‘Getting rid of parking spaces here would be devastating for us and the businesses around here,’ he said.
‘We only just took over the lease here last year, and instead of encouraging trade in small independent businesses, the States are putting something in place that will damage us.
‘We’ve noticed an impact when there is a wedding or christening at the church and they park in the spaces, taking them away from customers. So, to have them permanently removed will lose us hundreds of pounds – we might even have to close.’
Letters about the project have been sent to local businesses and residents, stating that the crossing project was recently agreed by the Integrated Transport Strategy Steering Group.
Traffic & Highway Services has said the crossing would improve facilities for those wishing to walk to and from the parish church, school and community centre. Four parallel parking spaces would be removed and the remaining spaces on the road would be reduced from one hour to half an hour.
‘Traffic and Highways welcome any feedback on the proposed crossing,’ a spokesperson said.
‘As ever, the pedestrian remains our principal consideration but it’s important to hear from those who may have concerns as well.’
Cooper Brouard estate agents’ director Matt Brouard said the removal of four parking spaces and cut in parking times was ill-considered.
‘This will strangle the village,’ he said.
‘There are around 15 businesses in the area that will be affected and they do more or less solely rely on these 25 spaces.
‘The new crossing will also be too close to the filter, in my opinion. It’s an accident waiting to happen. They should do it further down near the cycle shop, they have said they would be fine with that idea.’
The Green Hut business owners Sarah and Clint McGrath have now started a petition against the proposal for the new pedestrian crossing and have already received more than 70 signatures in less 90 minutes’ collecting.
‘For anyone who wishes to sign this petition they should come and see us,’ said Mr McGrath.