Free parking at risk
THE South Perth Esplanade’s first-hour-free parking initiative may be discontinued from June 30 if City of South Perth councillors vote to support an officer’s recommendations at tonight’s council meeting.
The first-hour-free parking trial, introduced in 2017 along the Esplanade from Harper Terrace to Queen Street, followed a petition from local residents.
The petition sought to attract more visitors to the Mends Street precinct while also providing locals with a free parking option, as construction vehicles for developments within the area blocked residential street parking between 7am and 6pm.
The City’s report recommending the initiative be revoked said there had been “a recorded decrease of 33 per cent in paid tickets issued” at the carparks, which had resulted in a revenue loss of about $138,000.
The report also suggested some visitors to the area had “misused the council’s initiative by obtaining another free one-hour ticket upon expiry of their first”, which also contributed to the revenue loss.
At their March 2017 meeting, councillors did note the proposed introduction of the parking initiative could result in about a $150,000 revenue loss per annum.
South Perth resident Julius Solomons said discontinuing the free onehour parking along the Esplanade while construction was still causing residential parking issues, as well as contributing to the decline of activation to the area, at least until the works were complete, was yet another kick in the teeth.
“Revenue loss may well be an issue but we need to look for a compromise,” he said.
“Retail is very quiet, we acknowledge that, but it is because these developments are taking place.
“We would have no problem if the one-hour free parking was removed from Harper Terrace down the Esplanade, from Monday to Friday, providing the parking at the bottom of Mends Street, which is about 60 bays, be left for residents’ use while Harper Street is closed permanently.”