Feb 6 2013 by Lorna Hughes, Birkenhead News
A PARK and ride car scheme at a Wirral railway station built with millions of pounds of European funding is being ignored by motorists.
The 267-space car park, built on cleared land at the rear of Birkenhead North station on Beaufort Road, opened in December.
But the car park is near empty most days, with commuters preferring to leave their vehicles in the roads around the station.
Bidston Councillor Jim Crabtree said that, in its current form, the car park was a “missed opportunity”.
He said: “It’s always empty and mostly seems to be used by contractors. People are not parking there because you have to go out and walk all the way around to get to the station.
“It’s a missed opportunity. It needs a bridge or another access that connects the car park to the station.
“People will go where they don’t have to walk far and that’s why they’re still parking on the roads.”
The car park – and another park and ride scheme at Bidston station with 197 spaces - was constructed with £2.6m of funding from the European Regional Development Fund.
Cllr Ron Abbey, one of Wirral’s four representatives on Merseytravel, said: “The issue falls back to enforcement and if there are double yellow lines on the roads, people will use the park and ride.
“In the scheme of things, it’s not far to walk from the car park to the station.”
Merseytravel said yellow lines would be introduced on the road outside Birkenhead North station “in the very near future”.
A spokesman said a bridge to connect the park and ride facility to the station was in phase two of the scheme, due to be completed later this year.