The Berejiklian Liberal Government is failing to provide sufficient investment in commuter car parking at train stations in the Macarthur region, despite raking in more than $100 million from a tax raised on parking spaces and local MP Greg Warren is not happy.
“The government’s failure when it comes to commuter car parking in the Macarthur region is beyond a joke,’’ he says.
“It’s been more than two years since the Government promised to upgrade the commuter car park at Campbelltown station to deliver 450 more parking spaces, and still we have seen no action whatsoever.
“The Government’s own website says that the extra spaces are due to be completed by the end of this month – given that the upgrade hasn’t even started yet, I hope the Premier and the Transport Minister have their shovels and hard hats ready because they’re going to need all hands on deck.
“In all seriousness, it’s completely reasonable for local commuters to expect that taxes collected by the Government for the specific purpose of encouraging the use of public transport should be spent on improving the huge problems we face with commuter car parking, rather than being hoarded away which is what the Government is doing,” Mr Warren said.
The MP pointed to figures from the recent NSW Budget that he says show that the government is quite happy to take money from commuters without re-investing it in commuter car parking, despite thousands of local commuters being forced to park increasingly far away from their local station, or avoid catching the train altogether.
In the 2016-17 financial year, the Government is expected to raise $106 million from the Parking Space Levy, rising to $113 million by 2021. The levy is raised on car spaces in the Sydney CBD and other high-demand areas and is allocated for measures that “encourage the use of public transport”, such as commuter car parking.
“Disappointingly, the most recent figures available show that the government is only spending a meagre $9 million on building or upgrading commuter car parks across all of NSW, despite carparks at every station in the Macarthur region being regularly full before 7am every morning.
“In 2015, then-Transport Minister Gladys Berejiklian visited Campbelltown to promise an additional 450 parking spaces at Campbelltown station; however no funding has been allocated and commuters continue to battle with the woefully inadequate number of spaces currently available.