Wellington Scoop

Residents’ street parking (“too cheap”) to cost more

Report from RNZ
Wellington city councillors are supporting resident parking charges being bumped up in the city. Councillors today backed recommendations to raise charges, including for parking, swimming pools and sports fields, as part of the annual plan. The proposed increase for residents’ parking would take a permit from $126.50 to $195 a year.

Councillor Brian Dawson said parking in the city was far too cheap and needed to rise. “We might as well just give it away quite frankly – and that is not going to discourage anyone from having one, two, or five cars parked on the street if they can get it that cheap. Let’s do something about this ASAP please.”

Another councillor, Iona Pannett, agreed residents’ parking was ridiculously cheap compared with coupon parking.

“We are essentially giving privilege to people who happen to be able to live in the inner city – there is an inequality here which is problematic,” she said. “I’m glad that we’ve got some extra revenue for parking – but I think we need to go further.”

The public would now be consulted about the proposed fee increases.


  1. Revenue Razor, 14. March 2019, 19:20

    So these two councillors think anyone who lives within an area they deem close to the city should be punished for owning a car? Cr Dawson is correct that they should just give it away though. If you live in one of these areas, you should have the right to one free permit. It’s not like Wellington houses typically have off street parking.

    Comparing coupon with resident parking is comparing apples with oranges. One is people commuting into the city which I can see they’d like to discourage, the other is where people live and have no choice but to keep their vehicle there, that’s a privilege all residents in Wellington should have Cr Pannett.

  2. aom, 14. March 2019, 22:49

    It sounds as though Cr. Pannett has screwed up on Green values again. Coupon parking used by commuters should be hammered so that public transport is a very desirable option rather than illogically being compared with the price of residents’ parking. Roadside parking by city residents is problematic, but no more so than where cars are parked both sides of narrow suburban roads, leaving only a single two-way lane that impedes the progress of efficient public transport. Cr. Dawson displays a dismal double standard. The inner-city evolved prior to the mid-20th century move toward private vehicle ownership when working class inner-city residents didn’t own cars. If the Councillor was consistent, he would not limit advocacy for steeper on-street parking charges to just the inhabitants of the ward he represents but uniformly demand on-street parking charges for all residents throughout the Council region.

  3. Anabel, 15. March 2019, 6:49

    In some areas ie next to universities you are forced by the lack of available coupon parking spaces due to students cars to buy residents parking. So this is just a poor excuse to unfairly raise the price.

  4. Keith Flinders, 15. March 2019, 10:09

    Let’s not stop at charging more for residents’ car parking permits, let’s look at the unfair rates system as well and start standard charging for services provided by the WCC.

    Generally a property closer into the CBD has a higher value and its rates are based on that value. The ability of the owner to pay isn’t taken into consideration. A lot of these properties don’t have off street parking, never have, and some have narrow streets with a footpath one side many with inadequate street lighting. High rates paid on rental properties are also reflected in rents charged.

    Providing WCC services to Newlands, for example, costs more per household there as homes are more widely spaced, they enjoy wide streets with free off street parking, and their view scape isn’t cluttered by unsightly electricity and data cables. Yet because of the property values their rates are a lot less than smaller houses in Mt. Victoria and other inner city suburbs on pocket sized sections. How can that be fair ?

    I made a submission on the Annual Plan in 2014 about rates affordability for those on fixed incomes, the response from Cr Pannett was that people struggling to pay their rates should effectively spend all their savings if they had any left, then apply to the WCC for their rates payments to be offset against their estate at death. Rather blinkered logic from her and nearly all the other spendthrift councillors in attendance. I don’t think many would want to have WCC officers being granted access to their financial accounts to prove how dire their financial situation is, and made worse by rates increase percentages being several times more than their income increases.

    My WCC/GWRC rates have increased by 24% since 2012, the General Retirement Income has increased by 16% in the same period. Paying rates is mandatory, paying for health and dental care is optional, as is buying nutritional food. House maintenance gets deferred by many property owners on fixed incomes, which ends up more costly in the longer term.

    Those on the average hourly wage have been impacted even more by rates increases since 2012, as their incomes have risen less. However on we go with a $150 million loss-making Convention Centre and the must-have arena at same, or more cost. The WCC charade yesterday voting against the arena was done with an eye on the October elections, but will come up again next term.

  5. David Mackenzie, 18. March 2019, 14:36

    When I bought my house in 1990, I wasn’t worried by the lack of off-street parking, because there was free parking on the street right outside. This parking has since been removed by the installation of a largely unused cycle lane. At present I do not pay for the parking I currently use, seldom closer than 75m from my house. However, I would definitely resent paying for residents’ parking if that were introduced in my street. I rather think that the council owes me an annual fee for the loss of amenity in the removal of parking adjacent to my house. A rates rebate of a couple of hundred dollars would be most welcome.

  6. Heidi P, 18. March 2019, 15:46

    I agree with that David Mackenzie, it’s odd that in 2019 fair compensation is still a completely unknown concept.

  7. Manny, 18. March 2019, 16:11

    Us too Anabel, we have also had to pay for residents’ parking as coupon parking isn’t an option – it’s been all taken up by students. Council raising the price for it is unfair indeed.