DOZENS of new car parking spaces are being planned to ease congestion at Fairfield General Hospital.
Bosses at The Northern Care Alliance, which manages the hospital, have submitted plans to Bury Council to build 90 new spaces on unused land at the hospital site.
The application also includes plans for associated access routes, footpaths, boundary treatments, lighting columns and landscaping.
Barry Waterhouse, travel and access manager at The Northern Care Alliance, which manages Fairfield General Hospital, said: “We are currently seeking to obtain planning permission for an additional 90 parking spaces at Fairfield General Hospital on unused land on the hospital site. 
“This is just part of a package of measures we are seeking to develop and introduce working in partnership with Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM), Bury Council and local transport operator."
The application follows a series of meeting during which residents voiced concerns about vehicles being parked on roads around the area.
They urged Fairfield Hospital management to expand its parking facilities, and alleged many of the trust’s staff are choosing to park outside hospital grounds and in nearby streets, causing problems for people who live there.
The application has been welcomed by residents, but they remain concerned that the spaces will not be enough.
Judith Torley, aged 66, who lives in Rochdale Old Road and helped to organise public meetings, said: “Obviously it’s a good start and we have been campaigning for this so it is a step forward.
“But I’m not sure it’s going to be enough, and I think a lot is going to come down to charges as well. We definitely need more than 90 spaces if they are looking to expand services at the hospital.”
A range of other proposals to help tackle car parking problems at Fairfield have been discussed by hospital bosses, including schemes to encourage staff and patients to use alternative methods of transport, and increased public transport services. 
Mr Waterhouse said: “We continue to be in contact with local residents to keep them updated on our plans to improve the parking situation at the hospital and to address their concerns and we welcome their input. Other aspects include promoting active and sustainable travel choices, plus encouraging the reduction in car use and offering information about alternative transport options to travel to and from our hospital site when practicable.”