Paid parking introduced at popular foreshore spot

Aerial shot of Deep Water Point.
Aerial shot of Deep Water Point.

IT will cost visitors to Deep Water Point up to $12 to use Mt Pleasant’s popular foreshore after paid parking was introduced, starting Monday.

The City of Melville gave little more than a week’s notice that charges would soon apply for all bays in the carpark and the news was met with widespread outrage on the City’s Facebook page and other local social media chat pages.

Locals lamented the lack of consultation and suggested free short-term parking should be offered so as not to discourage cafe users or ratepayers who exercise at the park.

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“What about doing the first hour free so if u want to grab a coffee you don’t have to pay to grab a takeaway – missing out on sales there?” Scott Walker queried on the Melville Community Chat page.

“Bad move Melville, I will be going somewhere else to spend my money and take my family,” Peter Symonds shared.

Drivers will pay $2.30 per hour to a maximum of $12 – or risk a $70 fine – after the charge was ticked off as part of the 2019-20 council budget.

Yet car parking remains free at destinations such as Point Walter and the Heathcote Cultural Precinct.

According to the City, the Deep Water Point decision followed multiple complaints from people about parking issues.

Chief executive Marten Tieleman said it was too early to speculate how much money ticket machines and associated fines would generate.

“Paid parking is needed to improve efficiency of the limited parking in the carpark, as it will encourage people to use alternate parking in the area, including the on-street parking bays along the Esplanade and the parking areas at Mt Henry Bridge and Apex Park,” he said.

“The City understands the community’s concerns and will continue to monitor and review the measures put in place, and determine any adjustments to parking arrangements if required based on the level of demand and utilisation.”

Mr Tieleman said the number of people visiting the area had increased in the past five years, following construction of a new jetty, boat ramp, Dome cafe, changeroom, play equipment, swings and picnic area.

“By allowing cars to park in the majority of the trailer bays in the winter months, and from 11am in the summer months, there will be more parking available for people visiting the site by car with the least amount of impact on people using the boat ramp, as the busiest periods are generally in summer or before 11am,” he said.

The City intends to add a further 40 parking bays at Deep Water Point within 12 months.