Waterford city parking plan: three hours for price of one
Cllr Eamon Quinlan’s plan is modelled on one used at the Dundrum shopping centre in south Dublin where customers pay for the first hour of parking and get two hours free. People tend to stay at the centre for at least some of the ‘free’ time. They do a bit more shopping or use the cafés and restaurants.
The Dundrum experience has been that “people shopped more, made impulse purchases, grabbed a coffee, had a meal, met up with friends and basically luxuriated in the area,” said the Fianna Fáil councillor.
He pointed out that, although Waterford’s council car parks, such as Waterside, charge less than €4 for the entire day, the impression of many motorists is that Waterford city is overpriced for parking.
“Competition from shopping centres on the city’s outskirts that offer free parking, as well as promotional parking in places like Kilkenny, have seen not just a steady decline of spending in the city centre retail sector but also a drop off in footfall,” Cllr Quinlan (pictured below) said.
“As our city-centre switches to a more pedestrianised, cafe culture we should be promoting a parking structure that doesn’t incentivise a ‘grab and go’ way to shop but having people spend time in our city centre.”
PHOTO: Park PNP