Free parking to boost business

THE City of Perth will trial extended free parking in West Perth in an effort to support local businesses and promote neighbourhood vibrancy. 

“I hear continually that the cost of parking, and the time limits on street parking, is a barrier to people visiting our city,” councillor Sandy Anghie said when putting forward the motion. 

The high cost of parking has led to car bays along parts of Hay Street standing empty over weekends, which was hardly good news for West Perth businesses already struggling from the effects of the pandemic.

“Times are tough out there at the moment; these little things can make a huge difference to small business owners,” Cr Anghie said.

The trial will result in lost revenue for the city, but Cr Angie says it’s a viable option: “The cost of free parking in West Perth should be insignificant in comparison to the potential benefits for the local businesses.”

The only West Perth cafes open on Saturdays are clustered around the free parking area, with Cr Anghie hoping more cash in customers’ pockets will encourage more to extend their trading hours.

The one hour free parking area will include Harvest Terrace and Thomas Street on Hay Street, Monday to Saturday. On Saturdays, one hour free parking will be available on Outram street and Colin Street. 

There will also be a reduced fees across the suburb on Saturday mornings. 

The trial will start immediately and run until June 2023, or until Covid-19 conditions are no longer an issue for local businesses. 

Councillors also requested a review of all on street parking in Perth, with findings to be announced in six months time. 

by ISABELLA SMITH

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