Better streets & spaces  |  26 Jan 2021

Christchurch City Council is encouraging people to give their feedback on a proposed new policy that aims to ensure we have the right mix of parking in the central city.

The Council has released the Draft Christchurch Central Parking Policy for public consultation and is giving people until 22 February 2021 to provide feedback.

“Our central city has been through significant land use changes since the earthquakes and continues to face a number of challenges. Our central city parking policy needs to support our efforts to make the central city a vibrant place to live, work, shop and socialise so we are really keen to hear people’s views on it,’’ says Council Head of Policy and Strategic Transport David Griffiths.

“The policy matters because it will guide decision-making about how we allocate street space and balance competing needs in the central  city,’’ Mr Griffiths says.

Have Your Say

Christchurch’s city centre has about 33,000 parking spaces. About 20 per cent of the parking spaces are on-street, with the majority offering unmetered and unrestricted parking.

The balance of the parking is provided off-street. Some of the off-street parking is for the exclusive use of particular shops or businesses, but there are still about 7200 publicly available off-street parking spaces that are managed either by the private sector or the Council.

“We want to ensure that in peak times there is high turnover, of parking spaces in the central city and are a proposing a target occupancy of 85 per cent at those times, which is international good practice,’’ Mr Griffiths says.

By supporting higher turnover of spaces, more people can benefit from spaces, with different people using the space at different times of the day, and different days of the week. This is generally better than having a single vehicle using a single space all day to the exclusion of everyone else.

“The Draft Christchurch Central Parking Policy advocates for the uptake of sustainable modes of travel, like walking, taking the bus, cycling or scooting and looks at how we balance the limited space between these modes,’’ Mr Griffiths say.

“Currently there is a large proportion of vacant land in the central city that is being used for temporary parking.  There is some concern that these makeshift parking lots reduce the city centre’s vibrancy. The Draft Christchurch Central Parking Policy provides for a review of the role of temporary surface off-street parking lots,’’ Mr Griffiths says.

“Our goal with the parking policy is to take a smart approach to the provision and management of parking so we get the balance of parking right in the central city. We want to allocate valuable space in a way that supports our climate change goals and enables the central city to be a vibrant place to live, work, shop and socialise.’’