Last week, Brisbane’s Westfield Chermside shopping
centre activated its paid parking scheme, which provides three hours of free
parking, $2 for parking between 3 and 3.5 hours; $3 for 4 hours, $6 for 5
hours, and a flat rate of $20 for 7 hours or more.
Westfield first announced the paid parking measures in late June, citing research that about 25% of parking spaces were being taken up
by non-shoppers, and that 93% of its customers stay for less than three hours,
with the nearby Chermside bus interchange catering for 5,000 commuters every
The introduction of paid parking appears to have
resulted in local residential streets around the shopping centre being clogged
with cars particularly within walking distance of the Chermside-CBD bus stops,
with some vehicles even blocking driveways.
According to The Courier Mail, Lord Mayor Graham Quirk
is placing responsibility on the State Government for not providing a park and
ride facility, leading Westfield to attribute the need for paid parking on
commuters parking out these shopping centres.
A Westfield spokeswoman was quoted in The Courier Mail, saying that the system ran smoothly yesterday, with happy shoppers easily
finding parks. “We have received positive feedback from customers on the
ease of finding convenient car spaces and the centre has strong visitation
numbers,” she said.