Tobermory parking proposal to aid social distancing

Parking along Tobermory's Main Street could be restricted temporarily to help with social distancing.

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Parking facilities could be temporarily removed from part of Tobermory’s Main Street to enable people to socially distance better, Argyll and Bute Council has announced.

The authority has begun a survey to gauge views from residents and businesses on the plans for the stretch of the street between the Ledaig car park and the Back Brae.

The consultation states that the idea of removing on-street kerbside parking on one side of the street was put to the council by the community in Tobermory.

The proposals have been made after the council received £315,000 from the Spaces for People programme to deliver temporary infrastructure to enable safer access for people who are walking, cycling or on wheels during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The council said: ‘As the main town on the Isle of Mull, we have been working to identify temporary options to enable everyone to maintain safe social distancing.

‘We have identified that the footway on the Main Street from the Ledaig car park to the Back Brae is too narrow to allow people to safely maintain social distancing.

‘We are proposing to temporarily remove the on-street kerbside parking on the landward (shops) side of Main Street, between the Ledaig car park and Back Brae.

‘This will allow us to temporarily widen the footway to create more space for pedestrians to safely social distance and, where necessary, queue to access shops and other facilities.  This proposal was suggested to us by the community in Tobermory.’

The Spaces for People programme is funded by Transport Scotland and administered by Sustrans.

Councillor Alastair Redman, the council’s policy lead for economic growth, said: ‘We have some initial ideas on how we help reopen our towns. Before putting anything in place, we want to consult with local businesses and residents first to find out what they think.

‘We need to create more space for people to move around safely and use our local businesses as they open up.

‘This might involve moving into public realm areas. Measures put in place will be designed to be temporary, for as long as we have to deal with Covid-19, and will focus on protecting public health, supporting physical distancing and kick-starting our economy.

‘Consultations will be online and will be done quickly as it is vital people are given the opportunity to start getting out and making use of our town centres again as safely as possible.

‘I would urge everyone to give us your views as it is really important that residents and businesses feel supported.’

The survey can be accessed at the council website at argyll-bute.gov.uk and is open until Sunday July 26.