|Parking causing problems for people in wheelchairs (c) Wrexham Leader|
Cllr Marc Jones, leader of the Plaid's Wrexham group, said:
"Many people have been in touch with us about the worsening parking problems at the Maelor, which affects staff, outpatients and visitors alike.It's believed that the hospital has a shortage of about 200 car parking spaces at peak times, leading to people parking illegally, missing appointments or even parking in Morrisons and walking.
"We wanted to discuss the matter with hospital bosses to see if there was a solution. Councillor Carrie Harper and I met with Graham Alexander and Iolo Jones at the hospital, where both were frank in admitting that the problem had intensified in recent months."
Cllr Jones said:
"We put forward some suggestions but the lack of capital to develop a multi-storey car park or a barrier system was cited.Parking problems were, he said, being made worse by people misusing the site as a base to leave their cars while travelling to work or shop elsewhere. But the councillors were also told that growing use of the hospital was also putting extra pressure on the parking.
"We were agreed on the need for better bus services to serve the hospital, both in terms of green travel but also to reduce the number of cars. There are plans to look at sites for a park and ride as well, which would also help to reduce pressure on the existing car parks.
"There was an acknowledgement that the number of people arriving by bus had reduced considerably over the last few years and that's as a result of reducing services in and around the town. We urgently need to re-think our bus services to make sure public transport is working for the public to get them where they want to go."
Cllr Jones added:
"Changes on the site will soon add a few more spaces for parking but, in the medium term, we believe that a more radical re-think is needed. Missed appointments cost money and people arriving an hour early to make sure of finding a space just compounds the problem. It was somewhat ironic to hear that a prominent politician was 20 minutes late to a hospital visit today because she couldn't find anywhere to park.
"Parking doesn't score highly in terms of health board spending priorities and that's understandable when there are new theatres to build or waiting lists to reduce. But car parking at the hospital needs to be sorted before it becomes a crisis."