Clear parking message to Berkeley Stadium netball clubs

Resident Vanessa Donnelly fears traffic congestion would block access for firefighters if a house caught ablaze. Picture: SYLVIA LIBER

Resident Vanessa Donnelly fears traffic congestion would block access for firefighters if a house caught ablaze. Picture: SYLVIA LIBER

Netball clubs competing in regular tournaments at the Berkeley Illawarra Sports Stadium will be told to avoid parking in the street in a bid to ease traffic congestion.

The comments, made by Illawarra District Netball Association president Diane Elvy, come after the Mercury reported on traffic chaos that ensues in Hooka Creek Road and Hertford Street during weekend tournaments.

"I do sympathise with people, I think everyone wants to get away in a hurry," Ms Elvy said.

"It is hard for residents to get in and out of their driveway, let alone have visitors.

"We will advertise to the teams and the clubs out there to please park in the parking area provided - but people don't necessarily take notice."

The announcement is long overdue, according to residents in the area.

No Parking signs exist on one side of Hooka Creek Road, while parking is permitted on either side of narrow Hertford Street, effectively turning it into a one-way street during busy tournaments.

Maria Tominez, 84, said she didn't bother leaving the house on weekends when tournaments were on, due to the traffic.

"I tell you what, when they're playing I don't go anywhere," she said.

"They park both sides of the road and [motorists] have to wait for the other car to go past.

"If I go anywhere I go with my daughter."

Fellow resident Vanessa Donnelly said the situation was so bad she had been unable to get out of her driveway.

"If there was a house on fire I don't think that the fire brigade would be able to get through," she said.

"There's enough room for one sedan.

"It would be wonderful if it was just parking on one side, at least that would let people in and out."

A Wollongong City Council spokesman said the council was aware of the problem, however it did "not receive regular complaints from the locality".

"All community members should abide by the parking signs at all times," he said.

"Residents are encouraged to advise the NSW Police, where appropriate, in relation to anti-social behaviour."

The spokesman said rangers were allocated to areas where there was "a particular safety concern, focusing on the CBD and other high pedestrian flow areas".

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