Some motorists have expressed concern over the lack of parking spaces in Blantyre and Limbe which forces many people to park in undesignated roadsides, thereby blocking or narrowing the roads.
Spot checks by Malawi News Agency (Mana) around Blantyre and Limbe established that some motorists are forced to park along the roadsides which in turn narrows the roads, making it difficult for vehicles going into opposite directions to pass each other or causing traffic congestion.
In Blantyre, the stretch of Glyn Jones Road between Sunbird Mount Soche and Standard Bank has clearly designated ‘No Parking’ signs, but the council’s traffic warders are seen collection parking fees from motorists, thereby legalising illegal parking.
Still in Blantyre central business district (CBD), most of the parking spaces have been leased out to corporate, notably financial institutions and Electricity Supply Corporation of Malawi (Escom), leaving out in the cold other motorists.
During checks in Limbe, motorists were also seen freely parking in undesignated places, especially along the newly rehabilitated Livingstone Avenue, thereby narrowing the purported dual carriage road into a single lane at some points.
When the designated parking spaces and the roadsides are fully parked, vehicle owners are being forced to park in shops’s parking areas such as at Chichiri Shopping Mall as well as Metro-Peoples Stores.
One of the motorists, Chris Mbewe blamed the city’s planning saying it does not give enough room for expansion hence the problem of the parking space.
He said owners of buildings around town are to blame as well for not creating basement parking space during their planning as well.
“Normally, these office buildings were supposed to have underground parking space meant for the staff of the companies to be accommodated in it.
“As it is now, most parking spaces around Blantyre are taken up by members of staff of various companies who park for long hours making it impossible for customers or clients to find parking space,” said Mbewe.
Blantyre City Council Public Relations Manager, Anthony Kasunda admitted that the council is aware of the growing number of vehicles in the City and the pressure it is exerting on the available parking spaces.
Kasunda said the council is exploring Public Private Partnerships to construct multi storey parking lots adding that the short term measure is to make sure that motorists manage the parking space available in the City.
However Kasunda said: “The Council will not entertain parking of vehicles in undesignated places. Let us all observe right parking and always remember to give others a chance.”–ManaFollow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :