We have a problem and it’s getting out of hand lately. In Brisbane, it’s costing us nearly $40-$50 a day including fuel and parking fees ‘gone mad’ just to get to work. As for Sydney, a car park space for sale is worth the price of a piece of land in some pockets of Brisbane, it’s no longer funny.
Sometimes we only need to look at the size of the problem to see its magnitude. In a highly mobile city like Brisbane with 90.5 percent of households owning a car and 14.1 percent with three or more cars, parking space is running out.
While we want to park and ride the reduced government spending and support in public transport is pushing us back into our cars. While new world cities invest more in public transport, our administration had sliced $20 million from public transport instead. Instead of encouraging drivers to hop on buses rather than drive, these massive cuts mean we aren’t investing in improved bus,ferry and CityCat services to free up our road and parking space congestion.
Carpark Costs On The Rise
Parking prices are towering higher and faster than the next skyscraper being built—from $10 a day for on-street parking to $35 a day in council-owned car parks at King George Square and Wickham Street, while privately-operated CBD car park complexes cost up to as much as $85 a day.
Residents aren’t spared either from parking woes. In older residential areas like Paddington, where homes built in earlier days on narrow streets are without the basic driveways or garages, the parking problem is pitiable. Residents are not only forced to resort to on-street parking, there’s the extra $10 to $25 per day to fork out for parking ‘in their own backyard’.
In the suburban shopping mall areas which are often also the public transport hub, residents are forced to put up with streets crowded with carpark-starved shoppers, commuters and staff. Shopping mall staff complain they pay up to $20 a day to park.
Changes to bus routes are channelling more people driving to major shopping malls and leaving their vehicles at surrounding streets.
There’s little wonder that illegal car parking rentals are a profitable side trade with homeowners cashing in to rent out private driveways, parking spaces or garages from $60 a week up to a few hundred dollars a month, up to $5000 a year. With the parking space crunch, small business owners are relocating offices to their homes, and owners of units occupied by students who don’t drive, are renting out parking spaces to cash in on council policy changes. Over recent years, Brisbane City Council (BCC) has tightened its rules to reduce parking in buildings, resulting in the number of carpark spaces being reduced by as much as 50 per cent.
While the BCC warns that the popular practice is illegal and constitutes a fine or court summons, it can’t stop this lucrative ‘black market’ trade that’s it’s indirectly helped to take off in Brisbane as motorists get fed up with lack of parking, exorbitant parking costs and fines. Driveways, personal parking spaces and garages are advertised on Gumtree, alongside ‘parking websites’ to match homeowners wanting to peddle their unused parking spaces with motorists.
In other cities, similar failed efforts by local councils to shove cars out of the inner city areas have only helped trigger surges and record prices in car parking spaces across Australia. People are anticipating the recent record sale price of $240,000 for a car park space at Sydney’s Bondi will sooner rather than later become the norm. Most car parking nooks in Sydney, once worth $5000-$10,000 were now retailing for a cool $40,000 to $140,000 each!
It’s unimaginable that some luxury developments with apartments costing a few million dollars are only allotted one measly carpark space. In the real world, most households In Australia will have more than one vehicle, and our additional cars can’t help but spill over to our already congested streets.
Brisbane has today become the 14th most expensive city in the world to park (Colliers International Global CBD Parking Rate), even ahead of New York, Rome, London, Hong Kong and Paris. But look on the bright side – it’s better than Melbourne (ranked 3rd) and Sydney (4th). While there’s not much one can do about the rising costs of parking, it definitely pays to shop and plan ahead for your parking needs before you drive off and here are some of our tips:
Fees vary widely across parking stations. Be familiar with each entity’s full day rates, hourly rates, weekend rates and early bird rates, and make your comparisons. In Brisbane most parking stations are run by either Secure Parking, Wilson Parking or Brisbane City Council (King George Square or Wickham Terrace). You can view Secure Parking’s Brisbane Parking solutions here. If you join their Club Secure you can receive parking discounts and member offers. Wilson Parking’s Advanced Locator can be viewed on their website. Both companies offer specials and discounts occasionally so it pays to check.
Wilson Parking’s Waterfront Place is free parking for less than one hour but be very careful not to exceed your stay even by the one crucial minute—otherwise you’ll regret the whopping $40 (between one and two hours).
If you’re heading to South Bank there’re some cheap parking deals that include a $2 early morning breakfast parking or the popular weekday lunch specials where you can park for only $8 if you enter after 11.30am and drive out before 2.30pm.
The Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre also has good rates, with parking up to 6 hours for only $15 or early bird parking (in before 9am, out between 3pm and 6pm) for only $12.
Metered parking is another option but the costs vary depending on the zone you find yourself in. For example, the costs for Zone 1 vary depending on the meter type and the day you’re parking but can be capped at either $6 or $10 for a full day’s parking between 7am and 7pm.
Just as it pays to shop for the best parking deals, no matter which type of car finance you choose, 360 Finance is here to assist you with competitive cost savings with the best lenders and interest rates. Apply today.