Time Limit Proposed for Central City Sunday Parking

13 May 2010

Wellington City Council is proposing to introduce a time limit on some Sunday parking in the central city.

Councillors at today's Strategy and Policy Committee agreed to consult with the public on a time limit for pay-and-display and metered parking between 8.00am and 6.00pm on Sundays.

Central city parking in pay-and-display and metered parks would continue to be free on Saturdays and Sundays. The proposed time limits reflect the management of Saturday parking, where limits apply between 8.00am and 6.00pm but parking fees do not.

The Council's Transport Portfolio Leader, Mayor Kerry Prendergast, says the Council introduced free parking in the central city in 1996 to encourage weekend shopping in the central city. "We extended the time limit on Saturdays in 2002 after people started using the parks all day, which meant other shoppers couldn't get a park.

"The popularity of Sunday shopping in the central city has led to a similar situation on Sundays, with people parking all day. Other shoppers and visitors who want shorter-stay parking can't get a park and many of them probably get annoyed and go shopping elsewhere. People who want to go for a Sunday walk along the waterfront or take part in other recreational activities in the central city can't find parks either and no doubt also drive away in frustration."

Mayor Prendergast says the Council's annual central city parking turnover and vacancy surveys show vacancy rates are well below the 15 percent vacancy target set out in the Council's parking policy, based on international best practice for managing parking to ensure motorists are likely to find a park. The survey shows the average vacancy rate on Sundays is eight percent.

The time limits would apply to 3,400 pay-and-display and metered parks in the central city, most of which have a two-hour time limit from Monday to Saturday. Shoppers or visitors who require parking for more than two hours can park in commercial parking buildings, including $3 parking in eight buildings that are part of the "In the Know" weekend parking scheme. The Council expects it would receive about $19,000 a year from Sunday parking fees.

Consultation on the proposed change to Sunday parking will run from 1 to 30 June.