As the busy tourism season gets into gear, further calls have been made for a solution to the town’s longstanding parking problem. Michael Healy-Rae TD recently threw his considerable weight behind the campaign, saying Killarney is ready for a multi-storey car park.

“It is many years ago that the late former mayor of the town and then Councillor Dermot O’Callaghan suggested a multi-storey car park,” he said. “The only mistake that he made was he was approximately 25-30 years ahead of his time.

“Of course, he was right. The town is ready for a multi-storey car park. Surface parking in a town that is as busy as Killarney is outdated and is a thing of the past. We have to wake up to this reality.”

According to the TEIR 1 tourism report, which was released earlier this year, increasing the town’s parking was the number one recommendation made by visitors who were polled. Improving infrastructure/reducing traffic came in at number two.

Parking was also cited as a major concern by Chamber members with 1 in 4 saying that the current situation was a barrier to tourism development.

We here at the Killarney Advertiser have been beating this drum for quite some time. Would a multi-storey car park, like the one drawn up by our designer above, be viable at the Glebe?

The new Rock Road car park is a step in the right direction but many have voiced concerns that it is too far from the town centre. Residents in Countess, which is a short walk from the middle of town, say that many people simply pull up and park for free outside their houses. In some instances, as our picture shows, these cars are blocking driveways. Not only does this highlight the lack of suitable parking in Killarney, it also shows how keen visitors to are to park as close as possible to the centre of town.

“We have the finest town, the best of facilities, the beauty of a National Park adjacent to it, and great people working together to provide what is a first class service,” Healy-Rae added. “But we have to have the infrastructure in place to cater for the people that are and will be coming over the years.

“We must remember that our locals are also suffering, with large queues of cars every day trying to manoeuvre around the town. We have excellent public representatives in our local authority and we all need to unite in addressing this most serious issue in the future.”