The Oban Times & West Highland Times
The concerns being expressed by residents, visitors and businesses over a shortage of parking spaces in central Oban are very understandable.
There are, undeniably, problems with finding somewhere to park in the town centre. Indeed, hotel guests at establishments such as the Columba and new Perle (formerly the Caledonian) have genuine difficulty locating anywhere to park close to their accommodation.
The very fact that guests are being advised to park at Pennyfuir cemetery and be transported into town by their hotels is highly unsatisfactory for all concerned. As a result, these visitors are parking in whatever spaces they can find around the town centre. That has a knockon effect for residents who have paid for council parking permits but cannot find spaces close to their homes.
The problem has arisen, in part at least, because of the work that is ongoing at the car park by the Columba Hotel in relation to the new pontoons being installed at the North Pier. That is a short-term problem (and only a small part of the issue) that will be resolved when the work is complete but, with the high season almost upon us, a long-term solution is needed urgently.