A plan to replace Orange's traditional rear-to-kerb angle car parking with nose-in parking has been a hot topic at a Future City forum this week.
Motorists who have backed into car parks across the CBD for decades would have to change their mindset in the move to create a more pedestrian-friendly city.
Mayor Cr Reg Kidd said it was one of the key topics raised by people who attended the first of two community forums where Orange City Council's plans for revamping the CBD were outlined.
Traffic modelling shows there are less accidents with nose-in parking.Cr Reg Kidd, Orange mayor
He said information gained at the forums, and other community feedback, would help council decide.
"There was quite a bit of discussion about people moving around the CBD. Parking was one [topic]" he said.
Cr Kidd said people were concerned about the change but there were benefits.
"Traffic modelling shows there are less accidents with nose-in parking," he said.
Cr Kidd said the Future City plans would encourage people to get out of their cars and walk. "We've just got the culture that if you can't park out the front of a shop you don't park," he said.
Cr Kidd said multi-storey parking would be considered. "We just can't have it [that] there are 10 parking spots in front of every shop."
A Future City report on the council's website said nose-in parking was "the preferred option in most situations" by the Australian and NZ government transport body Austroads.
It is proposed nose-in parking would be used in the CBD bounded by Peisley, Hill, Kite and Byng streets.
The report said the benefits included: improved traffic flow in a one-lane traffic environment; vehicle exhausts and towbars faced away from the footpath, pedestrians and outdoor diners; drivers could quickly enter a parking space; and drivers could see footpath obstructions easier.
However it has met with opposition on the council's website. It has received 20 comments, but only four favour the change.
Opponents said it would be dangerous for parents getting prams out of the boot onto the road, presented more dangers for people reversing out of the spots into traffic, would require expensive re-shaping of parking areas and would endanger cyclists.
The report said rear-to-kerb worked better for drivers leaving car spaces who could see other traffic and cyclists clearer and was better for unloading vehicles.
The report said Austroads had found angle parking created twice as many spaces as parallel parking.
Cr Kidd said other topics brought up at the forum included potential loss of trees in Anson Street.
However he said they would be replaced with more suitable species if the plan went ahead.
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