A new commuter car park with 63 spaces has opened at the southern end of Engadine train station.
Completion of the project fulfills an election promise by the Coalition government to add to the 42 spaces in the car park at the northern end.
Just how many of the spaces will be used by local residents is doubtful, because many motorists from the Illawarra park at stations between Waterfall and Sutherland before catching a train.
The opening of the multi-storey, 388-space commuter car park at Sutherland in 2015 appears to have done little to meet the need, with big increases in rail patronage since then.
Commuters are parking on roads more than a kilometre away from from Sutherland station and the situation at other stations is not much better.
The posting on No Standing signs outside Engadine station caused some residents to fear Princes Highway could be made a clearway.
A response issued by the office of Heathcote MP Lee Evans said, “To ensure the safety of all road users, No Stopping signs have been placed for a short distance ahead of the new car park exit to allow drivers unimpeded vision when leaving the new car park.
“Kerbside parking has otherwise been reinstated on the Princes Highway outside Engadine station.”
The opening of the car park coincides with the launch of an inquiry by State Parliament’s Committee on Transport and Infrastructure into ways to improve the park and ride experience for commuters across NSW.
Committee chairwoman and Miranda MP Eleni Petinos said in a statement commuter parking was one of the main ways of encouraging use of public transport.
“We are interested to hear people’s experiences of commuter car parking and also innovative solutions for how it can be improved,” she said.
Ms Petinos said the committee would examine the effectiveness of state government policies and programs covering commuter car parking, and new initiatives to encourage their use in the future.
“We will investigate whether new technology such as smartphone apps with real-time parking information can make it easier for commuters to find parking or if the Opal system could be used to ensure commuter car parks are only serving public transport users,” she said.
The closing date for submissions to the inquiry is Friday, August 4.
Further information: parliament.nsw.gov.au/transportandinfrastructure