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Car park charges reduced by Barnet Council but return to cash payments unlikely
Car park charges have been lowered in the latest council u-turn since the sacking of controversial parking chief Brian Coleman.
Fees in seven council-owned car parks were reduced today as the authority bids to encourage drivers back to fill the empty spaces.
Half-day visitor permits will also go on sale from Thursday, with a five per cent discount incentive for traders to encourage more shops to put them on sale.
The move comes weeks after a public consultation into the parking strategy of North Finchley town centre, the first of a series of assessments across the borough.
Environment portfolio holder Councillor Dean Cohen announced the new measures at Lodge Lane car park in North Finchley this morning.
He said: “We have chosen those that are close to private car parks to ensure they remain competitive.”
The new tariffs, which differ between locations, were introduced in Stapylton Road, Fitzjohn Avenue, Moxon Street, Stanhope Road, Woodhouse Road, Castle Road, Lodge Lane, Perryfield Way and East Barnet Road.
Prices in some instances have been dropped from £2 to £1.70 for one hour, while some time limits have been reduced to better value for money.
As well as the reduced car park prices, half day visitor vouchers will go on sale at £2.20 for four hours as an alternative to the all-day pass that currently cost £4.16.
A wider on-street parking overhaul is expected later this year, though a return to cash parking meters seems unlikely.
Cllr Cohen said: “We don’t want a block policy – each one will be designed for its location. I can’t confirm exactly what we’ll be doing yet – it could be different charges, more loading bays. I want to look at each area independently.
“Cash machines expensive to collect and administer and more things can go wrong. We’re looking at card machines for our car parks and if these take credit and debit cards I think they are an option for wider use.
“I want our town centres to be busy, prosperous places that are not hindered by parking issues.”