WORK has started on the traffic management scheme at Causeway Hospital.
The new arrangements will help manage the flow of traffic and control parking at the hospital. When complete, visitors to the site will have to pay to use the hospital car park.
As the main patient and visitor car park is in a poor state of repair, this will also be completely resurfaced which will cause some inconvenience to those visiting the hospital. Alternative car parking spaces have been identified. Those attending the hospital should allow extra time to get parked due to the ongoing work.
A Trust spokesman apologised for any inconvenience works will cause to hospital patients and visitors and added that contractors would make every effort to ensure disruption is kept to a minimum. Temporary arrangements will be clearly signposted.
He added: “The traffic at our hospital sites has increased significantly in recent years and the work when complete
will considerably improve traffic flow. A hundred spaces will be created on the Causeway Hospital site.
“Parking facilities at both our major hospitals have been abused in the past. We know of cases of hospital car parks being used by people with business elsewhere, people going shopping and, on one occasion, the car park at Causeway being used while the vehicle owner went on holiday for two weeks.
“We expect the introduction of paid parking to reduce this kind of unacceptable behaviour. The hourly parking rate is still under consideration by the Trust, but there will be exemptions for patients with a range of conditions and for some regular visitors”.
The Northern Trust launched the project, along with a similar proposal for Antrim Hospital as part of its modernisation and reform programme in 2008.
The new system should be completed and operational by summer 2011.