Parking strategy 101

Auckland Transport is asking for public feedback on its parking strategy, which may impact areas including Picton Street in Howick. Times file photo Wayne Martin
  • By Ken Scott – Chair Howick Village Association

On Wednesday April 13, Auckland Transport (AT) released a document online for public consultation.

It will be available from libraries throughout the Auckland region and AT staff will conduct webinars and face-to-face meetings.

This document is a strategic planning document on parking for the Auckland region.

Our community is invited to contribute their thoughts with a consultation period up to Sunday May 15.

It is great to see council organisations engage with their constituents and seek feedback on important strategic issues.

This invariably leads to the question as to what is the purpose of this consultation process?

Is it:

  • To invite public opinion on the conceptual focus of the parking strategy
  • To engage in feedback on the potential impact on locals
  • To invite alternative rationale/ideas, or
  • A beautiful glossy document to be displayed at Council meetings and on office shelving

On further investigation I have been able to ascertain that Howick Village is classified as a Tier 2 area meaning proactive parking management in areas of anticipated demand.

Picton Street is classified as a ‘Strategic network operated by AT’. This means time restricted parking and potential paid parking.

There can be little argument that congestion on Auckland’s roads need fixing.

There can be little argument that we have to reduce carbon emissions to help protect the environment.

However, I question the thinking that forcing people out of cars by reducing/eliminating parking has merit, unless you can provide a comprehensive, effective public transport alternative.

We don’t have it in Howick.

From the 2018 Census, the demographic data shows that the Howick subdivision of the Howick Local Board area has a high percentage of residents over the age of 65.

Some 16 per cent of our population versus 12 per cent across the whole of Auckland. It is one of the “oldest” populations in Auckland and 33 per cent more than Auckland total.

We cannot expect people (especially in this age group) to walk long distances to access buses that only take you part way to your destination.

Please have your say either online or at the planned meetings.