TRAM workers have sparked fury by creating a private car park in an area fenced off to other road users.
Angry Shopowners, struggling to stay in business because of disruption caused by the works, say up to 15 vehicles parked in a “laughable abuse of position.”
Last summer, tram workers were ordered to stop parking family cars behind temporary fences on Princes Street.
Edinburgh council has now weighed in on the issue, and have demanded the practice stop.
Motorists have to pay £3 an hour to park in George Street, earning the council around £325,000 a year. A day’s parking in private car parks cost almost £20.
Shopowner Grant McKeeman, who owns printing shop Copymade on the street, said the practice was all the more outrageous because of the lengthy roadworks.
He said: “It’s particularly frustrating because they are re-doing this a bit at the moment following a contractor blunder when laying the conrete.
“There doesn’t even seem to be any work going here which has lead to more and more cars parking in it.
“There have been up to 15 a day here which is ridiculous and taking the mickey.
“Our customers can’t get anywhere near Haymarket in their cars and here’s these guys driving and parking cars right at their work which we would all love to do.
“It’s a laughable abuse of position and an absolute shambles given the way the whole project has been handled.”
Council transport convener Lesley Hinds said: “I was there on Friday morning and reported this parking to the site manager and he was going to deal with the issue.
“It is in their compound but it is unacceptable for a free car parkj to be provided for staff/visitors on this project when all other staff who work in this area have to pay.
“I will continue to bring this unacceptable parking to the attention of the contractor.”
A spokesperson for the city council said: “The council is clear that any vehicles parked within the site should have a legitimate reason for being there.
“We have asked the contractors to ensure this is the case.”
It was revealed last week tram drivers were to take personality tests to determine if they were the right people for the job.