THE TOWN of Claremont will introduce a sweeping overhaul of parking regulations after passing a new Parking Precincts plan at council last night .
Parking Precincts have now been incorporated in the Town’s draft Precinct Parking Management Policy.
The policy includes control zones that recognise increased demand for on-street parking due to facilities or services within the precinct; timed parking as the preferred mechanism to allow reasonable access for short visits without permits; longer-term parking within zones provided by permits for owners of single residences; and residents’ permits only being valid within the precinct in which it is issued.
Timed parking in the precincts will operate 8.30am to 5.30pm Monday to Friday, and 8.30am to noon on Saturday.
Council acknowledged that increasing development of residential units and commercial space throughout the Town, combined with the expansion of private schools faculties, Bethesda hospital and aged-care facilities – along with more people parking in nearby streets to access Claremont train station – placed strain on on-street parking space.
Councillor Karen Wood moved an alternative motion to allow for an extended period of public consultation on the grounds the public would be more likely to embrace the changes if aware of the need for them.
Cr Bruce Haynes argued against further consultation arguing it would be better to allow residents to experience how the new system operates and then bring any concerns they have to the Town.
“People can react if it actually does affect them… If we put it out (for consultation) we will get ‘I think it will make a difference to me, I don’t know but I think it will’, whereas putting the measures in place would give residents the chance to say ‘it does affect me and I can demonstrate it, we need to make a change.’”
Councillors in favour of adopting the plan immediately argued that flexibility in the system would allow changes to be made in the future if necessary.
Cr Wood’s alternative motion was defeated, despite support from Deputy Mayor Peter Browne and Cr Kate Main.
In May 2016, council resolved to repeal the Town of Claremont’s Parking Local Law 2012 and adopt the updated Parking Local Law 2016.
The Town of Claremont Parking Local Law 2016 was gazetted on September 2.
Implementation of control zones was recommended for four precincts and, other than Central Zone, only to a specified area within the precinct reflecting their proximity to facilities or services in demand.
The two-hour parking will increase the rotation of on-street bays and limit the scope of employees to continually move vehicles around during the working day at the detriment of the residents’ ability to secure on-street bay.
Those areas further away and not included in the control zones will be unrestricted.
Town staff argued that the application of a single two-hour parking regime throughout the zones would provide better use of limited staff resources to visit the zones and enforce.
In August 2014 a parking forum saw residents raise a number of suggestions with council, including the rationing of scarce on-street bays; limiting permits for residents in group housing/apartments; consistency with parking controls across precincts; additional enforcement resources; and parking zones.
At a follow-up forum in November last year, councillors supported the introduction of parking zones; timed parking throughout zones; an application fee for permits; a limit of permits to each single residential property in the zone; and a review of parking local law.