A Keighley property owner is campaigning for the removal of a bus stop outside his new take-away business.
Shahid Rasool says there is instead a need for short-term car parking to attract customers to struggling businesses in North Street.
He claims the bus stop – which serves several routes out of town – is not needed because it is only a few yards from the bus station.
Mr Rasool said: “There’s a multi-million-pound bus station round the corner. Why should buses need to stop here?
“Buses only stop six or seven times a day for one person at a time.
“The whole purpose of parking, from a business point of view, is to generate customers. A whole heap of businesses would benefit – the gain would be phenomenal.”
Mr Rasool was this week collecting signatures for a petition calling for public transport body Metro to remove bus stops on both sides of the Church Green end of North Street.
The petition states more car parking would play a key role in helping local businesses grow in the current financial climate.
The issue was also put before Keighley Town Centre Association this month on Mr Rasool’s behalf by vice-chairman Graham Benn.
Mr Rasool’s company – Rasool Brothers – has owned two adjoining shop units in North Street for 25 years. Following the latest vacancy, he has decided to refurbish the units and open his own take-away.
Mr Rasool argues more support for business, such as the expansion of short-term parking, would prevent the rising number of closures.
He said: “I’ve had good tenants in for a number of years, but in the past five or six years, it has seen businesses come and go.”
Bradford councillor Khadim Hussain, who represents Keighley Central ward, said no decision could be made on the North Street bus stop until action was taken to tackle traffic problems across the whole town centre.
He added: “While I have sympathy for the impact on businesses, equally we have to look at the wider issues. Any tinkering in isolation will have a dire effect.”
Coun Hussain said council traffic engineers were currently working on measures to improve traffic flow on roads including North Street, East Parade and Hard Ings Road.