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Council to hand back car parks to DOI next week

Fri, 07 Aug 2020

Douglas Borough Council is to hand back the management of Chester Street and Drumgold Street car parks at midnight next Friday.

Shaw’s Brow and the Bottleneck car parks will, however, remain under the Council’s ownership and operation.

The decision comes in the wake of the statement made by the Leader of the Council Councillor David Christian MBE JP, during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic when the Council temporarily suspended parking charges, that the car parks the Council manages as well as those it owns and operates must be self-financing.

Councillor Christian said: ‘Simply put, managing Chester Street and Drumgold Street car parks has become financially unsustainable.

‘While the Council has demonstrated its expertise in running Douglas’s town centre car parks, it does not have the financial resources to continue managing these two sites.

‘The Council is required to pay the Department of Infrastructure £1.3million a year to rent Drumgold Street and Chester Street car parks. Even before the pandemic, that sum was imposing considerable pressure on the Council’s finances and adding to the rate burden. The substantial loss of car park income during the lockdown highlighted and, crucially, exacerbated that situation, despite representations made by the Council to the Department at that time to consider offering a rebate or temporary suspension of the operator’s licence. Regrettably, no such concessions were forthcoming. The Council now has no option other than to hand back the management of Chester Street and Drumgold Street car parks to the Department of Infrastructure.’


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