Controversial parking charges to be halved?
A DECISION to reverse a controversial parking charge in Penzance could provide an economic boost for the town centre if it is given the final approval by Cornwall Council.
It would see the price of parking in some council car parks in Penzance, and others in Newlyn and Marazion, halved between 4pm and 6pm from £2 to £1.
The new system would push up the standard day rate parking to 6pm, meaning two hours' parking could be purchased for £1 in some car parks.
The price would vary depending on the car park, but in Newlyn an hour's parking could be purchased for as little as 50p.
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The decision to move the £2 flat rate for parking until 12.30am from 6pm to 4pm caused controversy when it was introduced.
A consultation to gauge the popularity of reversing it ended earlier this month; however the decision still needs to be formally ratified for it to go ahead.
If it does it will come in to effect on March 15.
Cornwall councillors Roger Harding and Bill Maddern attended a community network meeting in July where the issues were discussed.
Mr Harding said in a survey he carried out in his ward 100 people supported moving the charges from 4pm to 6pm.
He said: "I am one of many people that feels Penzance has had a raw deal. There are a few improvements that need to be made but this is a good deal.
"If somebody wanted to park at 5pm they would only have to pay £1 instead of £2. If somebody came in to buy some milk they aren't going to pay £2 to do so."
If the change is introduced it will have an impact on parking at Marazion Station, Duke Street and St Peter's Hill in Newlyn, and eight Penzance car parks including Causewayhead and the Harbour car park.
Chairman of the Penzance Chamber of Commerce, Dick Cliffe, said: ""A lot of damage was done by ramping up rates; I'm just pleased to see they are responding.
"The 4pm issue was greatly damaging for the town. If you pop in to town to get something that will cost £8 or £12 you won't want to pay £2 parking.
"Maybe in the summer it would be better to have cheaper rates in the evening."