The twelve days of Christmas Parking – Park and Ride for Byron Bay

A twelve day Park and Ride scheme will be introduced as part of the Safe Summer in the Bay strategy.

“Traffic congestion and parking is one of the biggest challenges our locals and visitors face over the Christmas period,” Byron Shire Mayor Simon Richardson said.

“Providing affordable $5 all day parking at the Byron Regional Sport and Cultural Complex on Ewingsdale Road, and regular shuttle buses into town, is an obvious solution.

“If we can keep cars out of Byron Bay town centre, this is a big step towards improving traffic flow in the highly popular town.

“Areas of Byron Bay will be declared a special event parking area and a once a day 2 hour parking limit will apply.

“Parking at the BRSCC will be the most affordable all day parking in Byron, plus another advantage is the increased turnover in car parking spaces to help stimulate the retail economy,” he said.

From 26 December until 6 January, Council has declared Byron Bay a 2P Special Event Parking Area (SEPA). This means east of Belongil Bridge to south of Red Devils and everywhere in between, a 2 hour parking limit will be in effect, unless other parking laws apply.

For example, anyone can still park in the SEPA but needs to obey the posted time limits, be it 1P or 4P and where no time limit is signed the SEPA 2P limit applies. It also applies after other time limit areas expire, for example many streets are time limited until 6pm, after which the SEPA 2P limit will apply.

Exemptions to the SEPA 2P time limit are possible for “Permit Holders”, who is any Byron Shire resident that correctly displays a valid Resident Parking Coupon and by doing so allows, for example, parking all day in residential streets such as Butler Street.

Special edition 12-day SEPA permits will also be distributed for those residents who don’t already have a permit.  These will be provided FREE, two per household, to those eligible. Those already holding a valid coupon do not need the extra 12-day permit.

As for those visiting Byron Bay, and think the existing 1P, 2P or 4P or the SEPA 2P time limit is insufficient, Council will operate a Park and Ride service from the Byron Regional Sport and Cultural Complex (BRSCC) between 10am and 10pm, except on New Year’s Eve where it will extend services to 2am and also operate from the St Finbar’s and high school cul-de-sac on the southside. Except on NYE, park and ride will cost $5 per day per vehicle and provide all day parking. On NYE Park and Ride will cost $30.

Free all-day, “early bird” parking will also be made available for the twelve days at the Butler Street Reserve, except Thursday Farmers Market (2 Jan) and Sunday market day (5 Jan).  Vehicles will need to be parked by 10am and can not leave the car parking space until 3pm. The Reserve will be closed at 6pm to car parking.

Byron Shire Mayor Simon Richardson said, “We’re always looking for new ways to help things run more smoothly for residents and visitors alike. Between the Park and Ride option, more available spaces and 2P Special Event Parking times we hope to do just that.”

More information on these measures will be provided to households.

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8 Responses to The twelve days of Christmas Parking – Park and Ride for Byron Bay

  1. sue taylor says:

    Yay. Finally! Love the park and ride service. Hopefully lots of people use this and ease the traffic going into town… It is a great solution – and should save visitors heaps of time – if they choose the shuttle. I hope it will be well ‘signed’ & ‘promoted’ along the road into town – so the choice is clear.

    Council seems to be tackling some important issues! Well done. And you are doing a great job as Mayor Simon!

  2. Geoff Bensley says:

    It is always good to try new ideas and if it works it is even better.Of course you will get the knockers and doomsayers trying to block these initiatives but without trying nothing is achieved.Good on you Mr Mayor for making a difference .

  3. Andrew Smith says:

    What an ‘epic failure.’ Everyone knew it….I am sick of hearing people say ‘well we gotta try something’ When is this council going to take this issue seriously and not waste $150K of ratepayers money on a thought bubble that everyone I know knew would not work.

    Use the current Ewingsdale road lanes from the Belongil bridge to the Woolies Caltex and make one of these a 200m shoulder lane (saying ‘town parking’ ‘Suffolk Park’ ) that turns right down the back of Woolies Servo, down Byron Street and takes you to a free parking lot at Butler Street reserve. This can also link up with the ‘bypass’ idea and you can take this option to bypass town. Build another lane heading out to highway from Caltex Woolies Servo on the current grass to compensate for the loss of lane heading into town from the bridge. Nothing will be achieved if you do not take the pressure off the road into Byron like your current plan does not. How can making people turn off from the Police station roundabout fix the traffic??? At least if you offer free parking at Butler Street reserve, families can still walk into town, not catch a bus with 3 kids and beach stuff and sit in traffic?

    Lastly, taking Butler street reserve means moving the markets out to Byron Sports Rec fields or even the rec grounds in town….tough call but tough calls must be now made as we are SICK of it! I now hear tradies go to Ballina rather than sit in traffic, how great for local business out there.

    How more embarrassing can this issue get Mr Mayor?

    • siricho says:

      Hi Andrew. ‘Epic failure’ is I guess a matter of opinion. I and all the users of the service thus far believe there is merit in using this service, but of course, with adjustments that are required as learnt from a trial. Butler st reserve is currently operating as an all day parking area as part of the park and ride scheme. The idea you have for a bypass unfortunately cuts through some pretty constraining territory, I have thought of a similar path previously. I share your frustration Andrew, but there are no easy answers. The traffic into Byron has been an issue for well over a decade before I put my hand up to try and serve my community and I bet it will still be a problem to some degree a decade after I leave and comment from the sidelines. I’m trying my best to bring into being a few different option- bypass, park and ride, cycleway, use of train, public transport etc, that combined may make the trip into town quicker. However, having around 1.5 million people using this road built for a town of 10,000, and residents doing so also will always mean that car based solutions will not be the sole answer.

  4. Andrew says:

    Since Negative comments are deleted on this ‘Public Forum’…’s time to have a ‘Public debate’ again….so our comments can’t be deleted in the flesh…..Maybe this post might last longer??

  5. Andrew Smith says:

    I am sorry Simon, but I’ve been avidly keeping an eye on these buses and talking to the people working on them. It is an unfortunate failure and waste of ratepayers money and there is no way to sugarcoat it. What adjustments can be made that can fix it?? The only adjustment is a BYPASS! Of course I do agree something had to be done, but these stop gap ideas are just not the solution. Why does everyone keep telling us there are ‘no easy answers’ This is the problem…..’constraining territory’ you say, For christ’s sake Mr Mayor, some hard decisions need to be made for the sake of the whole community…..It’s 30 years I am told a bypass has been talked about…..Someone bloody do something…..I know of at least a dozen tradies that now drive to Ballina to do their buying, and they tell me everyone else does the same….I know of at least 6 families that wanted to go out to the circus arts over the holiday period but said ‘No Way’ because they didn’t want to sit in traffic. How the hell can we be even considering a new west Byron development without a solid bypass idea in place and proven to work. This latest bypass idea does not in anyway address the bottleneck between Caltex Woolies Servo and the Roundabout at the police station…How is this going to work and ease traffic?….Simon please be the mayor that fixes this issue once and for all…we are sick and tired of the excuses for the past 30 years. It is becoming an embarrassment for the town…….

  6. Wow that was strange. I just wrote an extremely long
    comment but after I clicked submit my comment didn’t show up.
    Grrrr… well I’m not writing all that over again.
    Anyway, just wanted to say superb blog!

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