Byron Shire Council has implemented a Restricted Parking Area along Seven Mile Beach Road at Broken Head.
Council has installed new signage at the entrance to the Broken Head Nature Reserve and along Seven Mile Beach Road.
The reason for the new Restricted Parking Area is to help Council manage the growing popularity of the national park in the most sustainable way possible by making it clear where people can legally park.
The decision was made by Council at its December meeting, following a review by the Local Traffic Committee, which is made up of representatives from Council, Police, RMS and the Member for Ballina, Tamara Smith.
Parking at Broken Head, and particularly along Seven Mile Beach Road has been an increasing problem in the last several years with significant concerns relating to traffic congestion, parking confusion, restricted access for emergency services, bush fires and the degradation of the natural environment.
Acting General Manager, Phil Holloway, said the parking problems on Seven Mile Beach road are an ongoing frustration for Council with the previous No Stopping signs continually ripped from the ground and thrown in the bush.
“This is a narrow gravel road and people continually ignored the signs, parking on both sides of the road making it impossible for other drivers to get through,” Mr Holloway said.
Making the road a Restricted Parking Area means that signs now indicate where people can park whereas they used to indicate where people couldn’t park. If there are no signs in place then people cannot legally park and can expect to receive a fine.
“People need to realise that the signs are there for a reason, and if the past is anything to go by, some people will turn around and complain to Council when they have been fined – extraordinary!” he said.
The dry weather and threat of bush fires is an enormous risk at the moment for people who live on Seven Mile Beach Road, as well as visitors, and people should be aware of this when entering the Broken Head Nature Reserve.
“I take this opportunity to ask people who are visiting the beaches off Seven Mile Beach Road to please respect the environment and park according to the signage.
“This means do no camp there, drop your rubbish, or use the bush as a toilet because the natural environment is incredibly precious and diverse,” Mr Holloway said.
Restricted parking areas will also be implemented in Broken Head in 2020 after discussions with local residents.