A BARRIER will be installed at Huddersfield Royal Infirmary’s car park by the end of this month.
The move means drivers will be allowed a free half-hour to drop off or pick up passengers – but after that they will have to pay.
A pay and display system operates at the site off Acre Street now, but is patrolled with parking attendants checking the tickets.
Once the new system starts operating drivers will take a ticket out of the machine when they arrive and the barrier will lift.
If they are just dropping off or picking up people they will be able to park free, which gives them having time to park and walk up to the wards to pick up the patient.
They will then need to pop the ticket into the machine on their way out and the barrier will automatically rise.
Any longer and they have to pay the charges at a new pay station in the main entrance.
Again, the ticket will be needed to be put into the machine at the barrier exit to lift it.
Other barriers will be set up around the rest of the sprawling site.
A spokeswoman for Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Trust said: "The barriers on the main visitors’ car park will become operational by the end of the month.
"All remaining barriers will be phased in during May to minimise disruption on the site as a major development scheme is underway to build a new state-of-the art endoscopy unit.’’
She added: "The barriers have not yet been made operational due to the erection of a tower crane on the south drive and ongoing demolition and car parking work on the Acre Mill site.
"Five sets of barriers will be installed on Acre Mill – the main visitors car park – plus at the top and bottom of the south drive and the Learning and Development Centre car park.’’
She added: "The temporary car park on the Acre Mill site is being opened in phases. The initial phase commenced in mid March and additional spaces will be opened over the next few months.’’
Work continues at the site after planning permission for 608 spaces on the Acre Mill site was approved in January.
Eventually, hospital bosses want to develop two permanent multi-storey car parks along with medical and support services on the 5.4 hectares site.
The temporary car park will be split into two sections, with access from Acre Street and School Street West.
It will be open each day until hospital visiting ends at 8pm.
Full plans for the whole site have not yet been approved, although a Grade II listed building known as Z block is being converted into offices for hospital staff.
Hospital chiefs hope the moves will solve car parking problems at the hospital and on the surrounding streets.
In recent years resident only parking has been allowed on streets to stop staff and hospital visitors from parking in front of people’s homes and drives.