Limassol is working on changes in its road network to ease congestion by decreasing dependence on private vehicles. Proposed measures include encouraging use of public transport and raising parking fees in the centre of town, philenews reports.
Demetris Demetriou, transport expert and coordinator of the plan for sustainable urban transport in Limassol told the website that the changes will be introduced gradually over the next few years with a planned completion date of 2030.
The general principle of the study is a fundamental change in the use of private vehicles to cover transportation needs. Currently the car is considered by most as the most suitable form of transport accounting for 91.8% of the total, with buses accounting for only 1.8%, walking for 5.7% and bicycles for 0.7%.
If Limassol residents do not change their mentality then problems such as accidents, emissions and traffic jams, will only get worse as the population increases but space for vehicles to circulate remains restricted.
The preferred mobility scenario includes a mix of:
- One way streets (Ayios Phylaxeos south of Makarios avenue, Leontiou Avenue and sections of Gladstone and 16th June 1943 streets and Navarinou
- Pedestrianisation of the shopping centre including Anexartisias street
- A road network only for buses towards the central bus station
- Low speed (< 30kph) for residential areas
- Improved public transport system (longer hours and more frequent service)
- Five park and ride stops north, east and west of the centre
As regards parking, the plan is not to provide more spaces, as the aim is to reduce use of private cars and increase use of buses. Instead parking fees will rise – doubling or tripling – with the closer the parking area to the centre of town the higher the rate.
The basic principles for the proposed parking policy for Limassol include:
- Parking for residents (at least one parking space for those living in central Limassol)
- Guaranteed parking for people with special needs and other special categories of users (banks, public authorities etc)
- Adequate parking for loading/unloading for shops, restaurants etc
- Paid street parking for the public
- Paid parking not on the street which must be fully monitored