Providing ready to eat meals for those who don't have the time to prepare food was supposed to make life easier for Waikanae residents.

And for almost 10 years Carolyn Mitchell has been running The Pantry in Omahi St doing just that, creating a business that provides heat and eat meals ready for people to pop in the microwave and eat straight away.

Over the last few years however the parking situation surrounding The Pantry has been increasingly challenging with parks getting harder to find for Carolyn's customers, the majority of whom are elderly and only popping in for a few minutes.

While Omahi St is an industrial area she is finding local, able-bodied workers are parking out the front of her business for the day while at work.


"You can talk to them until you're blue in the face.

"They're young, abled and can definitely walk, but they don't.

"There are options for them, they could park in Kapanui or Ngaio road.

"It's also going to get worse because of all the industry that is coming to Kāpiti."

Carolyn has contacted the council on a number of occasions dating back to two years ago with no solutions even after Carolyn, her neighbours and service people who drop supplies off to her shop have complained.

"Some people phone up and say to me we are coming now to get some meals and when we pull up outside we will toot.

"So I've got to go running out and that's just dangerous because they'll park in the middle of the road.

"My solution would be to have a five or 10 minute park out the front that the mower and garden shops next door could also use."

Next door Carolyn Lawton from Coastal Landscape Supplies is having the same issues.
"It's insane.

"I had a lady just this morning that was quite stressed because she couldn't get a park.

"She ended up driving around, couldn't find a park and then went home and called me afterward, so now we are dropping it to her - it's losing us business."

However, it is not as easy as just adding a five minute parking sign.

Kāpiti Coast District Council infrastructure services group manager Sean Mallon said, "We're currently looking at the Waikanae Town Centre parking as a wider project, which involves considering a range of parking on multiple streets.

"While we appreciate Carolyn's situation, and understand her frustrations, unfortunately it's not as easy as approaching parking one issue at a time.

"Any changes made to parking always have other effects – which then impacts on other people or businesses.

"Each time we modify parking we need to consult with all adjoining properties and provide reports back to the community board, which, if approved, then have to be ratified by council.

"Phase one of the Waikanae Town Centres parking reorganisation was carried out to tie in with the opening of the Greater Wellington Regional Council Park and Ride car park.

"The review of parking in Omahi St is part of phase two.

"We've started work on the consultation for phase two and the process will be completed later this year."