‘THE EMPEROR’S NEW CLOTHES?’
Willoughby Council has released an interesting online parking map for the Chatswood CBD. The online map shows the location of all potential off-street parking locations (free & PAID) as well as Council off-street parking stations (of which there are two).
Council claims that “the new parking map website makes it easier for drivers to find parking in Chatswood, reducing congestion and making trips more efficient“. However, they do not provide any evidence to back their claims. The map does not show available parking spaces in real-time. So there is really little difference knowing that some streets have paid parking whilst others are free – if you can find a space.What drivers want is to know where there is an available space.
There is no evidence that a driver seeking on-street parking near their destination continues to ‘hunt’ if they cannot find a convenient space. More likely, they will head to one of the free 3 hour parking stations (Westfields and The Chase), one hour free at The Concourse or head to paid parking stations. Unfortunately the private Wilson’s parking stations are not shown on the map.’
This ambition has been incubating for at least the past 20 years. Most of the large parking stations now have digital monitoring of their space. What would be useful is a App that shows parking availability in real time. There is also technology that allows kerbside parking to be monitored.
Come on Willoughy, get with the times for once and develop a system that can actually achieve what your are claiming.
In addition the map shows the location of all the various types of parking zones such as Disabled, Loading, Taxi, Shared Car, Motorbike as well as No Parking and No Stopping zones. Unfortunately, they do not show any ‘Kiss & Ride’ zones.
Basically, what the map shows is that Ticketed off-street parking is mainly on the western side of the railway line and streets closest to the CBD. There is a Council car park on either side of the railway line where you can get one hour free. Free on-street is in locations meaning a longer walk. You need to work out for your self where the paid parking stations are. They assume you know you can park free for three hours at Westfield and The Chase. Is one of the intents of this map actually to get people to pay to use Council parking rather than private free parking?
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