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At 8pm last Wednesday, as 150 people attended a CBD forum, at least one parking officer got to work

August 31, 2023


This sign is positioned halfway down the taxi rank zone on Lords Place. Copyright: Orange News Examiner.

By Peter Holmes


One or more parking inspectors ticketing vehicles in the CBD last Wednesday night appear to have hit pay dirt.


The Orange News Examiner knows of two people who were booked a total of nearly $500 around 8pm, but it is likely others were also stung.

One had mistakenly parked in the northernmost part of the taxi zone on Lords Place, and the other in a bus zone on McNamara Street.






Last Wednesday (August 23, 2023) the Hotel Canobolas hosted a forum on the Voice to Parliament referendum.


The first part of the taxi rank (far left, up to the tree) is only for taxis 24 hours a day. However the section from the tree to the silver vehicle is open to the public from 6am to 6pm, but becomes a taxi rank from 6pm to 6am, seven days a week. Copyright: Orange News Examiner.

The event attracted more than 150 people and parking on Summer Street, Lords Place, McNamara Street and the McNamara Street car park was at a premium.


Somebody in uniform spied an opportunity and went to work.



The person who parked in the taxi rank on Lords Place north told The Orange News Examiner that they were running late to the event and misread the multiple signs on a pole (see top photo).



They said they thought the space was able to be used by the public from 6pm to 6am, but it is actually from 6am to 6pm.





The first part of the taxi rank (see photo above) running from Summer Street to a tree on the road is exclusively for taxis 24 hours a day.


Video: The full length of the taxi rank. Copyright: Orange News Examiner.


However the next section, from the tree to the pedestrian crossing further down, is one-hour public parking from 6am to 6pm, unlimited parking from 6am to 6pm on Saturday and Sunday, but becomes a taxi rank from 6pm to 6am, seven days a week.


Although accepting they were in the wrong, they wanted other drivers to know that the taxi rank actually extended further along Lords Place than some people realised.

“I thought it ended at the tree, but it keeps going down to the crossing,” they said.



The bus zone on McNamara Street. Copyright: Orange News Examiner.

They questioned whether it was necessary for Orange City Council to be booking people on a Wednesday night at 8pm, saying it was a country town, not a CBD hotspot. The ticket - which came in the mail a week later - was for $201. They said it would be a struggle to find the extra money.



Around the same time last Wednesday, on McNamara Street on the other side of Robertson Park, another resident - off to pipe band rehearsal - was booked.



Usually there were plenty of parking spots at night on that section of McNamara Street, but with the event at the Hotel Canobolas, nothing was available.



He took a punt and - like others - parked in the bus zone, figuring that at 8pm buses had stopped running for the day.


Red pointers show the last bus for Glenroi.



According to bus maps, the bus zone is not actually a bus stop, but somewhere for buses to wait. Or, perhaps somewhere to allow a bus driver to - for example - go and buy lunch between runs.

Also, by 8pm bus runs in the city are pretty much done.




One bus does leave for Glenroi from Orange Central Square at 8:10pm on Thursday and Friday, but it begs the question: Why is the bus zone in operation 24/7 when it could be shared with the public during off-peak hours?


The state government says the fine for parking in a bus zone is $275, making it highly likely it was the man's most expensive pipe band rehearsal yet.


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