Dept of Transport defends Westfield Carousel’s paid parking measures

The entrance to multi-storey parking off Leige Street at Westfield Carousel. Picture: Jon Hewson d482409
The entrance to multi-storey parking off Leige Street at Westfield Carousel. Picture: Jon Hewson d482409

THE Department of Transport says paid parking has been in place in other capital cities for several years, in the wake of Westfield Carousel confirming it will charge centre and retail staff to park as part of $350 million expansion.

The Department provides transport planning guidelines for councils and developers that focus on carparking management, transport modelling, and targeted behaviour change measures.

A spokeswoman for Scentre Group, which runs the Westfield centre, said there were no current plans for the introduction of paid parking at its other expansion sites like Innaloo and Whitford City shopping centres.

Scentre Group recently confirmed its new smarter parking system at Carousel will include paid parking.

There will be no paper tickets, no queuing at pay stations and no lengthy wait periods to find a park, but they are implementing a designated, secure staff parking area with CCTV at a flat rate for all centre and retail staff.

Any tariffs for Carousel patrons have not been revealed.

The Department’s Integrated Transport Planning acting executive director Craig Wooldridge said without an integrated suite of measures, the expansion of large shopping centres would result in very large increases in the number of people travelling by car, causing major traffic congestion and problems for motorists trying to access the centres.

“The approach of improving public transport infrastructure and services, increasing cycling and walking access and managing parking all combine to reduce traffic congestion, provide alternative travel options and improve access to shopping centre for the community,” Mr Wooldridge said.

However, he said how this is applied by centre managers was up to them.

“It should be noted at shopping centre managers have the flexibility to use the tools or mechanisms that they determine will be the most effective for their centre and the local community,” Mr Woolridge said.

“For example, they may choose to restrict parking in access of three or four hours, especially for workers who have the option of extensive public transport services to get to and from work.”

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