Free parking changes confirmed

The changes to fees apply to pay and display car parks
The changes to fees apply to pay and display car parks

Motorists will no longer enjoy a period of ‘free-parking’ in Aberdeenshire Council’s pay and display car-parks.

The authority’s infrastructure services committee formally voted to instead introduce a 50p charge for the first hour and a series of subsequent tariffs commencing in September to make up a £180,000 annual shortfall.

A last-ditch bid by the Opposition Partnership to retain a 30-minute free spell was voted down by nine votes to three.

The committee also agreed that officers undertake further feasibility studies into decriminalised parking enforcement which would see the reintroduction of traffic wardens to manage on-street parking across the region.

Under the new parking tariffs agreed, drivers will pay £1 for one to two hours’ parking, £2 for two to five hours and £5 for over five hours.

Committee chair Councillor Peter Argyle said: “I will make the point again that 75% of all our places are not affected by this in any shape, way or form. They remain free and there is no intention to change that.

“This simply applies to those parking spaces currently covered by a pay and display. The deficit in parking is £180,000 roughly each year and we need to address that.”