Oct 11 2012 By James Gates
Dalawar Chaudhry is unhappy with Hambrough Road car park closing at 8pm. The restaurant owner thinks it is discouraging people coming to the area in the evening because there is not enough parking.
TRADERS in Southall say the parking situation is at its 'lowest ebb' and business is suffering.
Parking is one of the biggest issues in Southall, as traders say that the lack of available spaces is keeping away customers and visitors to the area.
Dalawar Chaudhry, who runs Chaudhry’s TKC in the Broadway, said a ‘ruthless’ parking situation in the area is still making life difficult for businesses and a temporary car park unveiled by Ealing Council has made little difference.
Mr Chaudhry said: “Car paking in Southall is not getting any better. The ruthless parking regime is still there. Businesses in the area are suffering and the situation is at its lowest ebb. I speak to many people running businesses in Southall and all of them say they feel as if they are struggling.”
Ealing Council opened a temporary car park in Hambrough Road, just off the Broadway, amid much fanfare last December. It was intended as a stop-gap while the council finalises a location for a permanent parking site for about 100 vehicles.
But Mr Chaudhry said the site has made minimal impact since its opening and is being under-utilised: “I think the problem with that car park is that many aren’t aware it exists due to its location.
“There are also other factors such as the fact that it closes after 8pm, which doesn’t make life easy for people who want to visit Southall in the evenings.”
Janpal Basran, leader of Southall Community Alliance said: “I’m not really seeing too much of a difference in Southall since the temporary car park was opened. I think the site is under-used and that’s why we need a permanent car park more than ever, as well as a long-term strategy.”
Julian Bell, leader of Ealing Council said: “We’ve always said that the Hambrough Road car park is temporary since it is not in the perfect location. Since it has opened we’ve installed features like a machine that makes it possible for people to pay by cash instead of credit card, which will make it easier to use.
“We’re moving ahead with plans for the permanent car park, which we are hoping to deliver by summer next year, if not earlier. I’ve seen an increase in usage figures at the temporary car park so more and more people are definitely using it.
“I spoke to Mr Chaudhry this week and have invited him to come and talk with myself and environment officers about the possibility of a rickshaw scheme that will take people from Hambrough Road to the Broadway, which will increase awareness and improve publicity for the car park.”