PAY IN TOWN CENTRES
Popping to the shops to pick up a few things for dinner? If you don’t already pay for parking in your main street, you might have to in future.
Auckland Transport is proposing to introduce parking charges in metropolitan areas and town centres where demand is high.
Ellerslie Business Association town centre manager Sally Eustace does not support the idea.
‘‘I’d be absolutely against any sort of paid parking but if it’s forced upon us I believe some of that parking fee should go back into our community.’’
The 30-minute parking zone on Ellerslie Main Highway works well and if shoppers need longer there are car parks with a two or three-hour time limit, she says.
A bigger issue is the people who park in residential streets and take the train into the city.
She would like to see a park and ride facility near the train station.
Ellerslie Residents Association chairman Bryan Johnson agrees.
‘‘The residents who live close to the town centre are annoyed that their streets fill up with people who park all day because it means visitors can’t park close by,’’ he says.
A two-hour limit on residential streets within 100 to 200 metres of the shopping centre may be the solution, Johnson says.
Eustace suggests Auckland Transport provide a secure, weather-proof lock-up for bikes at the train station to encourage people to cycle rather than drive to Ellerslie.
St Heliers Bay Village Association Mainstreet manager Wendy Caspersonn says time restrictions work well in the area because they are closely monitored by parking officers.
‘‘[Paid parking] would be the death of the village. People would just go to Eastridge Shopping Centre or Sylvia Park where parking is free. As a village you think it’s friendly, easy and inviting. It would just go against the grain.’’