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It's a little hard to keep up, but there are new rules for Orange's Ophir Car Park

October 20, 2022

A tree comes down late on Wednesday night. Copyright: Orange News Examiner on-the-spot photo.

By Peter Holmes

Two-hour parking has been introduced in the Ophir Car Park to "relieve pressure during the Lords Place south construction phase and as part of long-term changes for the precinct", according to an Orange City Council media release just before noon on Thursday.

Thirty-six car spaces on the fringe of the Ophir Car Park facing Lords Place and Kite Street will be changed to free two-hour parking (8:30am to 6pm) this week.

The remainder of the car park will remain all-day.

Both the two-hour and all-day zones will remain free.

"As when other changes are made to parking in the city there will be a period when warning rather than infringement notices are issued as motorists get used to the changes," said council.

Orange mayor Jason Hamling - one of nine councillors to vote in favour of the proposal at Tuesday's council meeting - said with projects such as this there will be some disruptions, but "council was committed where possible to limit impacts", according to the media statement.

Ophir Car Park. Google Earth.

“There has been a lot of discussion around the project and now is the time to get on with the work," he said.

"I appreciate there are some different views on this which is often the case with transformative projects that are designed to meet the needs of a growing city.

"This project shifts the focus from vehicles to people. It has been designed as a temporary project but can also transition to permanent or be amended to meet changing needs. There will be a rigorous review process during the trial period.”

Stage 1 of the Lords Place south upgrade will take approximately six weeks to complete.

Stage 1 includes the tree replacement program, new water mains and preparatory work for the roll-out of new lighting.

There were 16 trees in the street. Ten were removed and six were retained. Twenty-two new trees will be planted.

There are two species to be planted: Red Ash and a Field Maple.

"Advanced tree stock will be planted in underground tree cells," said council staff in the statement. "At the end, the number of trees in the block will be almost doubled to 28. The advanced Red Ash trees are in 400-litre pots and are up to six metres tall. They will grow to around 12-15 metres."

Tree pit installation and tree planting will start in November.

"Council is working to a tight deadline to complete the first stage of the Lords Place South upgrade by the 1st of December. The plan is that no construction work will happen in the street during the already busy pre-Christmas shopping period. Work will then re-start in the New Year," the statement said.

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