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Concerns raised over proposed King's Square revamp
A DISABILITIES campaigner has raised concerns about proposals to reduce the number of disabled parking spaces in a York square during a revamp.
York Independent councillor Lynn Jeffries, who is herself disabled, claimed the plans for King’s Square seem to fit into a pattern of a gradual tightening of restrictions on disabled motorists in the city centre.
She said City of York Council had already scrapped some disabled parking bays outside the main library, and decided to restrict access to Davygate, and she wondered if there more such proposals now in the pipeline.
She said she fully understood the desire to reduce the number of vehicles in the city centre to make it safer for pedestrians, but claimed there did not seem to be an understanding that more severely disabled motorists needed to be able to park right in the centre if they were to be able to go shopping.
The Press reported yesterday how the council is planning a major investment in the square, which would increase the amount of space for pedestrians and street performers, and might also include the introduction of new cafe seating areas.
But the extra space will partly be achieved through a narrowing of the road at one end of the square, which it is believed will result in a reduction of three or four disabled parking spaces.
A council spokeswoman said the central objective of the King’s Square project was to make more of the space feel like a ‘pedestrian-focused environment.’
She said: “The language of roads, such as asphalt, road signs and parked cars, make it currently difficult to achieve this objective, because people don’t feel safe to wander in some places, so we are investing in the square to change this.
“The whole of Colliergate, including Kings Square, is and will remain a blue badge parking zone, ie we will not be changing any traffic orders, and we have designated two disabled spaces specifically to encourage blue badge holders to park in this location.”