It will provide affordable short-stay off-street parking, which will then allow for better access to the increasing number of retail and hospitality offerings in and around Tory, College, and Jessie Streets.
Revenue from the parking spaces will also offset the loss of revenue to the Council as on-street car parks are removed from parts of the CBD in coming years in order to facilitate greater active and public transport options.
The investment includes a mix of car park types, with casual parking in addition to monthly leased parking. The revenue on average per car park is expected to be between $2600-$2900 per year and would result in a payback of the purchase price in about 25 years.
The car park building contains 771 car park spaces in total. The Council has purchased 474 parks. The remainder of the parks service what was the Distinction Hotel and the apartments located in the overall complex.
The 474 parks are currently operated on a 24/7 basis, and it is envisaged that this would continue under Council’s ownership which would provide parking for people seeking to access the city for entertainment purposes in the evening as an example.
The car parks would initially be operated as a mix of short term and monthly leased car parks. However, changes to that model over time are envisaged with the potential to convert a percentage of the parks to support the Council’s wider objectives. This could potentially include dedicated EV charging stations, dedicated car share parking, cycle/e-cycle charging and parking.
Any of these initiatives would need to be agreed with the body corporate for the car park building – but the Council’s purchase of the 474 parks means it will have the majority of the votes on the Body Corporate.
The financial modelling assumes that the cost per hour to park casually in the building would align with the pricing for existing on-street parking.