AN environmentally friendly solution has been found to resolve parking problems in Mirfield.
Councillors have come up with a way to get rid of the “mess” that has been caused by traffic congestion around the Westfields day centre.
Extra parking space is being created without having to tarmac over a green space.
A sturdy mesh material will be laid over some of the grassed area to provide parking spaces.
It follows the failure of a travel plan which indicated more people would walk or cycle to work than currently do.
Mirfield councillor Martyn Bolt, cabinet member for transport, welcomed the new idea.
Clr Bolt said: “It has been a mess to put it simply.
“When Kirklees renovated the offices some years ago they put a planning application in and produced a travel plan which said they believed staff would be encouraged to walk, cycle or car share to work.
“On day one in the new building it was obvious things wouldn’t go according to the travel plan.
“There were parking problems everywhere and some residents couldn’t get down their driveways.
“We didn’t want to dig up the green areas and put a load of tarmac down, destroying the environment there, so this alternative seems to be the best option.”
Contractors will use a turf reinforcement technique which means a sturdy mesh material will be laid out over part of the grassed area.
New grass will still grow through the mesh and provide a strong and stable surface for extra parking and take vehicles off the surrounding streets.
Clr Bolt added: “I will be very disappointed if members of Kirklees staff continue to park on the road when this new space is created for them.
“If that is the case I will be looking for parking restrictions.
“I hope the residents living round there will be pleased with what we are doing, which is trying to make it easier for them, people working there and using the centre.
“This is priority for us and it will be done as quickly as it can be.”
The Westfields day centre is also the home of Kirklees Council’s Children and Young People’s Service.
Both centres are used by members of the community and council workers every day.
Many have been forced to park on nearby streets after the under-estimate in parking provisions during the planning application process.
Clr Jim Dodds, cabinet member for children’s services, added: “Clr Bolt, other councillors and local people have led a strong campaign to bring home the need for this to be addressed.
“I am pleased we are able to do so in a way that will take cars off the road without destroying the grassed areas.
“They have highlighted the potential dangers for road users and the disturbance to residents.
“I am pleased that we have been able to identify funds and work will start shortly.”