28 May 2015

Park-and-ride charge 'wrong signal'

9:51 am on 28 May 2015

A motoring commentator is questioning Auckland Transport's judgment over its proposal that commuters pay for parking at some train and bus stations.

Commuters wait to board a south-bound train. A new timetable at the end of the year is expected to boost weekend services.

There are fears charging for park-and-ride facilities could turn commuters off catching the train or bus. Photo: RNZ / Todd Niall

As well as charging for some park-and-ride facilities that are currently free, the agency also wants to raise parking fines and extend residential parking zones.

It said it wanted to reduce Aucklanders' dependence on car travel.

But the editor of car review website Dog and Lemon, Clive Matthew-Wilson, said charging for park-and-ride facilities would be a mistake.

"It will inevitably send out exactly the wrong signals at a time when more and more Aucklanders are considering using public transport."

Mr Matthew-Wilson said charging for park-and-ride facilities could turn commuters off catching the train or bus.

North Shore councillor George Wood said a lot more work needed to be done before the proposal was implemented.

If it did go ahead, he said, it may come across as just another money-making mechanism.

Mr Wood said one side-effect of the move would be commuters parking in nearby streets instead, which generally enraged residents.