A meeting of the DCC's Planning and Environment Committee has voted to discontinue the Rideshare Scheme from March 2012.
Since 2001, the Council has run a tertiary Rideshare Scheme offering priority parking for ride-sharers to reduce parking pressure and achieve more sustainable travel behaviour in Dunedin’s tertiary area.
In February this year, the Finance, Strategy and Development Committee asked for a comprehensive review of the scheme, which found that it wasn't effectively achieving its two key objectives of reduced parking pressure and more sustainable travel behaviour. Also, the costs associated with fixing the problems, so the scheme could better achieve its objectives, were not justified.
Several key issues undermining the scheme were:
• High levels of abuse of the scheme (on average 50% of people were arriving by themselves).
• Half the Scheme users were sharing with people they live with and said they would Rideshare even without the Scheme (with partners, family, etc).
• The scheme is undermining sustainability objectives by encouraging some people to travel by car who might otherwise take the bus, cycle or walk.
• Enforcing the Scheme has always been ineffectual and the high cost of achieving effective enforcement is not justified.
• There has been a low uptake of the Scheme with only 377 people registered (1.3% of the tertiary sector).
• There is low occupancy of the spaces with only 108 out of 155 spaces occupied each day on average.
• There is a growing need for more parking options for other people needing to find parking in the area (eg other businesses, people attending sports at the local facilities).
On the basis of this review, the Planning and Environment Committee voted to discontinue the Rideshare Scheme from 1 March 2012.
The report that informed the Committee's decision can be found on the Council website.
The scheme will operate as usual until the existing tokens expire on 28 February 2012, so there will be no immediate change for current users.
A small number of the Rideshare spaces may be removed from the scheme in areas with very low occupancy to allow for other parking needs.
Rideshare tokens will still be available for the rest of 2011, for students and staff at the Polytechnic or University, for $30.
The Planning and Environment Committee has directed staff to investigate other ways of reducing parking pressure, increasing sustainable travel behaviour and making parking more convenient in the tertiary area, in close consultation with key stakeholders and users of the area.
Anyone who has views on how the parking situation might be improved around the tertiary area is invited to send suggestions to email@example.com.