A dirt lot in Thirroul that has become an unofficial car park is in line to be paved in the coming financial year.
The patch of dirt outside Woodward Memorial Park – just north of the Lawrence Hargrave Drive-Railway Parade intersection – has become an unofficial car park as parking spots close to the suburb’s CBD have become harder to find.
Wollongong City Council has been talking about turning it into a formal car park with bitumen and line marking since 2015.
Financial issues and more pressing priorities saw council defer the project.
However, the council’s draft budget for 2017-18 includes funds allocated to reconstructing six car parks across the city.
A council spokeswoman confirmed the Thirroul car park was one of those six.
“Council has $2 million earmarked in the 2017-18 capital budget for car park reconstruction,” the spokeswoman said.
“One project in the area is programmed, the resurfacing of existing parking spaces along Railway Parade, Thirroul.
“The informal car park is on land that is jointly managed by Transport for NSW, Roads and Maritime Services and council.
“A concept design has been prepared with council currently liaising with Transport for NSW as to what improvements and maintenance can be completed on this land, with the view to arranging the work in the 2017-18 financial year.”
At this stage the exact start date of the works is not known nor what effect there will be on parking once the car park is closed to allow work to be carried out.
A 150-space commuter car park in nearby Church Street still has a large number of vacant spots despite being in use since late 2015.
It is understood the formal line marking of parking spaces will result in an increase in the number of cars able to use the lot.
Marking out the parking spaces will be an improvement because, at present, motorists park wherever they find space in the lot.
This increases the risk of drivers being parked in.