A DESIGNATED parking spot for drivers with disabilities or mobility restrictions is to be restored outside the revamped ANAM Arts and Cultural Centre on Killarney’s East Avenue Road six months after it was removed.
Cllr Brendan Cronin first highlighted the matter last November when he criticised the decision to remove two blue badge parking spaces from outside the building during a €240,000 upgrade of the facility.
He complained that there is no longer any wheelchair parking space on the stretch of road from the entrance to the railway station to the cinema and he asked that at least one of the disabled bays be restored in the area.
A meeting of Killarney Municipal District Council heard at the time that there is a doctor’s surgery located directly cross the road from the ANAM building and elderly or disabled people now have to walk a considerable distance to and from the nearest blue badge space.
Council officials said the two spaces that were on the road had been relocated to the side of the courthouse – within the College Street car park – following discussions with the Killarney Access Group.
But Cllr Cronin insisted that arrangement would be “totally useless” for six to eight weeks every summer when Bird’s Amusements move into the car park and “maximise every inch of it”.
The council said the specifications for a disability space require a 1.2m clear zone and the area from the railway station to the cinema did not have adequate width on the road to provide a space that meets the guidelines.
But when Cllr Cronin raised the matter again at the most recent council meeting, he was assured that following another inspection of the street, a suitable location has been identified and, with some alterations to a footpath, one disabled parking space will be restored. Work is expected to commence shortly.
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