Wollongong parking meters follow up

Following the installation of parking meters in
Wollongong’s CBD in March 2010, Council experienced significant backlash from
the community which resulted in the review of parking rates and pricing
schemes, and the placement of the meters and parking zones in conjunction with
community consultation.

According to data provided by Council, and an
interview with the Business Chamber president, the parking machines are now
generating considerable additional revenue ($885,305 from parking tickets plus
$470,000 in parking meter-related fines). Encouragingly, the number of tickets
printed has risen from around 10,000 per week in March, to around 22,000
tickets by late December, indicating a greater turnover of people visiting the

The Illawarra Business Chamber president Les Dion says
that feedback provided by businesses indicates that their customers are able to
find parking spaces faster. This is in contrast to their initial fears that the
installation of meters would damage business, turning people away from the CBD.

A spokesperson from Council said that the revenue from
the parking meters does not go to general income, but instead is reserved for
capital improvements to CBD parking and transport infrastructure. The first
project is a public car park on the corner of Keira and Ellen streets, planned
to open in February 2011.

Despite the initial teething problems, the results
from the introduction of paid parking seem to be positive for the community;
both in terms of optimising parking availability, business performance, and
community projects as a result of the additional revenue.

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