A DISGRUNTLED taxi driver has called for the ‘free after three’ parking scheme to be scrapped in Chester because it creates too many traffic jams.
Taxi driver Craig Buckley said the scramble for free parking was causing “chaotic” traffic jams outside the Princess Street car park near Chester Bus Exchange and Chester Market.
He said the popular scheme introduced by Cheshire West and Chester Council (CWaC) should be ditched.
Mr Buckley said: “The chaos on that street started when they started the ‘free after three’ parking. There are cars, taxis and buses backed onto the dual carriageway every day because of the people trying to get a parking space.
“This council is causing problem after problem with their plans in this city. Buses are stuck, people are stuck, everyone is stuck.
“No one seems to want to take responsibility for it and something needs to be done.”
But not everyone agrees.
John Sheldon, chairman of Chester Market Traders’ Association, said the problem was being exaggerated.
He said: “It should be free from 10am until 2pm nevermind after 3pm. Princess Street very rarely backs up. I know there are sometimes problems with people trying to go into the car park the wrong way but apart from that it is fine.
“There is a problem at 5.15pm but everywhere does then. It does not affect most people and it is not worth making a fuss about.
“The real problem at this end of town is that we are losing some of the bus routes from here soon. We are losing three or four bus routes. This end of town is dying.”
Council spokesman Ian Callister said the authority had not received any reports of traffic problems in Princess Street related to the car park but added officers continually monitor the situation.