Parking cash to pay for road upgrade

The scene at Kex Gill earlier this year
The scene at Kex Gill earlier this year

SURPLUS parking charges will be used to help develop new transport schemes in North Yorkshire including the rerouting of the A59.

The project is one of four major schemes that will be backed by £500,000 a year from on-street parking charges.

The A59 was closed at Kex Gill earlier this year when heavy rain made the land above it unstable.

Repairs have been made but the county believes the long term solution will involve altering the road’s route.

A review of the Harrogate relief road, climbing lanes on the A59 and improving the A1/A59 junction are the other major schemes to be supported.

A further £100,000 from on-street parking will be invested in schemes designed to encourage people out of their cars.

These will include projects to encourage cycling and walking as well as improvements to Seamer station.

Coun Don Mackenzie, North Yorkshire’s executive member for highways, said: “We use on-street parking charges to encourage people to use off-street car parks, reduce congestion in town centres and encourage people to use other forms of transport.

“We don’t do this to create revenue but any revenue we do make, far from going into our general coffers, is put back into highways improvements and bus and rail services.

“For the first time we have now decided to use surpluses to fund sustainable transport schemes such as for cycling and walking which also help to ease congestion and contribute to the health of the population.

“We have now also decided that up to half a million pounds a year will also go into developing major and much-needed schemes such as the Harrogate relief road and the realignment of the A59 at Kex Gill to avoid land slips.”