ORANGE Colour City Running Festival co-ordinator Kim Roweth has defended the amount of parking provided, following complaints from drivers who struggled to find a parking space on Sunday.
Mrs Roweth admitted organisers had a target of 1000 entrants and did not expect the number of competitors in the festival to skyrocket to 1700 - more than double the 789 runners in runners in last year’s festival.
But she said organisers had permission from the Orange Health Service to use the on-site car park providing 1200 parking spaces in addition to outside parking at Sir Jack Brabham Oval.
“We didn’t have any complaints there are some people who go to these events who walk several kilometres from the car park,” she said.
“It’s like the Orange people only wanting to walk 100 metres to the supermarket.
A Western NSW Local Health District spokeswoman said the festival organisers were given permission to use the front car park at the health service, but said there were only 705 parking spaces in the hospital car parks with an additional 175 to 200 overflow parking spaces on the neighbouring sportsground.
“From our point of view there were no hiccups or complaints,” she said.
“Considering it was a Sunday event there were no problems at our end.”
But Orange Ex-Services’ Club chief operating officer Guy Chapman said both of the Country Club’s car parks were “chock-a-block” full with festival competitors despite them being reserved for members and guests.
“We would have had problems if it had been a nice day [for golf],” he said.
Mr Chapman said the club would take it up with organisers ahead of next year’s event as they did not have permission to use the car parks.
Mrs Roweth said entrants had been advised of the parking on the festival’s website and via email.
Council spokesman Allan Reeder said the council considered a range of traffic issues when it approved several temporary road closures as part of the festival but parking was the organisers’ responsibility.