Central city  |  25 Jan 2019

The one-hour free parking offer in Christchurch City Council-owned parking buildings in the central city is coming to an end.

“The one-hour free offer has been helpful in promoting the central city as a destination and the feedback from both the public and central city stakeholders indicates it has been a really positive initiative,’’ says Council Transport Operations Manager Steffan Thomas.

A parking sign at the Lichfield Street parking building.

The central city has thousands of off-street parking spaces.

“It has helped people get familiar with our off-street parking offerings and encouraged them to visit the central city more often.

“It has helped people figure out that visiting the central city is easy and encouraged them to discover all the new shops, bars, restaurants, cafes and businesses in the area.

“With other initiatives now under way to encourage people into the city centre, the Council has decided the one-hour free parking offer will not be extended beyond 31 January,’’ Mr Thomas says.

The Council introduced the one-hour free parking offer in November 2017 when the Lichfield Street Car Park opened.

The offer was introduced on a four-month trial basis as a way of encouraging people to come back into the city centre and initially applied to all Council-owned off-street carparks.

At the end of the trial the Council decided to extend the offer in the Lichfield Street and Christchurch Art Gallery parking buildings until the end of June 2018.

After consultation with key central city stakeholders, it subsequently decided to further extend the one-hour free offer through until the end of January 2019.

“The 2018 Life in Christchurch central city survey results show the initiative encouraged about one-third of respondents to visit the central city more often so it has certainly achieved its purpose,’’ Mr Thomas says.

“We’re delighted by the level of support shown by the public and we hope that people will continue to come into the central city on a frequent basis because it is becoming a really dynamic and vibrant place.

“Our off-street parking is affordably priced and very easy to find – you just need to look for the ‘P’ signs on the one-way streets,’’ Mr Thomas says.