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22 June 2017

Reversing out of a tight spot? Getting better parking in Scotland

Parking is often cited as a bugbear by both businesses and drivers alike, especially in Scotland’s town and city centres. The concerns raised – lack of available spaces and eye-watering costs – are often swept under the carpet by councils who view parking as a way to generate income. Portree - Parking

On the surface it may sound like unfounded business grumblings. However, for those who operate on high streets, or require access to city/town based clients (electricians, cleaners, joiners and the like), mismanaging parking can have a big impact. 

But don’t take our word for it.

In a UK Government review into the future of high streets, Mary Portas, the Queen of Shops, heard frequently that badly managed parking was harming local economies and putting towns at a competitive disadvantage compared to their out-of-town competitors.

She stressed that tackling the challenge of the high street without looking at parking was impossible and that car-based access was essential for 21st century shoppers.

Mary Portas - Parking ArticleHer fix was for local areas to implement free controlled parking schemes that work for their town centres, something like the free after 6 scheme run in Glasgow city centre or free street parking on Sundays.

She also recommended the introduction of a new parking league table covering the cost of parking as well as the quality and reinvestment of the money raised by parking charges.  

Do you agree with Mary Portas that these changes could improve parking in Scotland? FSB wants to know!

Would you like to see more done with mobile apps or parking time limits changed in your town centre? Has the parking policy in your local area helped or hindered your business? Let us know your thoughts at scotland.policy@fsb.org.uk

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