LACK of parking space in Lusaka’s Central Business District has forced people to park in undesignated roadsides, thereby blocking and narrowing the roads.
Spot checks by the Daily Nation around Lusaka town found that some motorists are forced to park along the roadsides which in turn narrows the roads, making it difficult for vehicles going in opposite directions to pass each other and causing traffic congestion.
One of the motorists, Marvin Kapembwa, noted that some places were clearly designated “No Parking”, but call-boys were seen collecting parking fees from motorists, thereby legalising illegal parking.
“It’s like some call-boys are now doing business from that, they are collecting money from motorists and assigning them illegal parking spaces,” Mr. Kapembwa said.
Another motorist, Silwimba Silume, observed that in the CBD, most of the parking spaces have been leased out to corporates, leaving out other motorists.
Mr. Silume also blamed the city’s planning, saying it did not give enough room for expansion, hence the problem of parking space.
“As it is now, most parking spaces around Lusaka are taken up by members of staff of various companies who park for long hours, making it impossible for customers or clients to find parking space. And also the planning and design of this city is not all that good,” Mr. Silume said.
Lusaka City Council public relations manager Mulunda Habeenzu admitted that the council was aware of the growing number of vehicles in the city and the pressure it was exerting on the available parking spaces.
Mr. Habeenzu indicated that the council had not gone to slumber, adding that the short term measure was to make sure that motorists manage the parking space available in the city.
However, he warned that the council will not entertain parking of vehicles in undesignated places.
“We are aware of the high population in the city, and we have not ignored that fact. While we are working on solutions, please let us all observe right parking and always remember to give others a chance to avoid congestion and accidents,” Mr. Habeenzu said.