Shop­pers com­plain as coun­cil changes park­ing charges

Birmingham Post - - NEWS -

BIRM­ING­HAM City Coun­cil is un­der fire for re­mov­ing op­tions to pay to park for one or three hours, mean­ing that mo­torists may now have to pay for un­nec­es­sary time.

Be­fore the change on April 1, driv­ers were able to choose whether to pay for one, two, three, four or more hours of park­ing.

Now the op­tions for one and three hours have been re­moved, mean­ing that driv­ers want­ing to stay for less than an hour must pay for a min­i­mum of two hours, and those who want to stay for more than two hours must shell out for four. But the author­ity has de­fended the pol­icy, say­ing that the price of park­ing is still “very com­pet­i­tive”.

Wed­nes­bury res­i­dent Cassie Stroud uses the coun­cil-run Snow Hill car park ev­ery Satur­day when she comes to shop in Birm­ing­ham.

Ms Stroud, 39, used to pay for three hours of park­ing, which used to cost £4. How­ever, now she has cho­sen to cut her shop­ping trips short to two hours, rather than pay £5.80 to park for four hours, which is more than she needs.

“I go to Birm­ing­ham ev­ery Satur­day to shop and get a cof­fee. Three hours was per­fect,” said Ms Stroud.

“I’m not go­ing to spend £1.80 ex­tra on park­ing I don’t need.

“Now when I walk past a shop and think I would like to try on that dress I won’t be­cause I have to get back to the car.”

Other park­ing op­tions in the cen­tre of town in­clude the NCP car park in Dale End, where you can park for an hour for £1.60, three hours for £3.60 or four hours for £4.60.

This com­pares to the coun­cil-run Snow Hill car park which charges £3 for two hours or £5.80 for four.

“I would prob­a­bly choose an NCP car park in­stead now which of­fer three hours, and is cheaper any­way”, said Ms Stroud.

She wrote a com­plaint about the charges to the coun­cil.

The coun­cil replied apol­o­gis­ing but in­sist­ing that pric­ing was fair.

A spokesman wrote: “I’m sorry that the re­moval of the one and three hour tar­iff bands have proved an in­con­ve­nience to you but hope you will see that the charges at Snow Hill re­main com­par­a­tively rea­son­able for a very cen­trally lo­cated car park.”

They jus­ti­fied the change by say­ing that the one and three hour tar­iffs were not as pop­u­lar.

Pri­vate car parks in the city cen­tre have also re­cently in­creased their prices.

In April, the Bull­ring ditched it’s one-hour rate which cost £3, mean­ing the min­i­mum spend is now £5.50 for two hours.

Shop­pers must pay this rate even if they nip into the cen­tre for 20 min­utes to col­lect an item.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.