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Roadside parking killing town trade
3:10pm Friday 18th January 2013 in News
ENFORCEMENT of roadside parking time limits cannot come soon enough, say Malvern traders.
Their call came after Malvern Hills Distrct Council disclosed that since new parking charges were introduced in September, the turnover in short-stay car parks has increased.
The cost of an hour’s parking was reduced from 60p to 50p in short and long-stay car parks, while the cost of two hours was increased in short-stay car parks, but cut in long-stay car parks, with the aim of encouraging the use of offstreet parking.
Although ticket sales have increased, income from the sales has decreased by £4,000 since the prices were revised.
Half of this reduction is due to lower sales of HGV and seven-day tickets.
Traders said the result was encouraging, but what is needed is enforcement to prevent roadside spaces being taken up for long times during the daytime.
Chris Marks, of Iapetus Gallery and chairman of Great Malvern Association of Trade, said: “It’s encouraging people are still using the short-stay car park but the key issue in the town is parking is in the wrong place. It’s too far away from the town centre. What we need is the on-street parking to be enforced, so that there is a high turnover.”
David Siviter, of jewellers Parrys, said car parking charges need to be kept as reasonable as possible and on-street parking time limits should be enforced.
He said: “That would help by moving cars on and freeing up the spaces for more people. At the moment, people know that they can ignore the time limits and nothing will happen. The sooner it comes in, the better.”
But not everyone agrees.
Adrian Ward, of Robson Ward Kitchens, also a town councillor, says parking enforcement by the district council is not the answer.
“The council will have to justify the costs of employing the warden, so there will be pressure for him to get in as much revenue as possible. People will be getting tickets when they’re just a few minutes over.
That’s what’s happened elsewhere.
“I don’t object to enforcing on-street parking restrictions, but it should be done by the police, who are not revenue-driven.
He said the answer was to enlarge the existing car park behind Belle Vue Terrace. He said: “It’s already a good little car park and it does very well. It should be enlarged, instead of the council trying to get people to park in Priory Road and walk up the hill, which they won’t do.”