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Free parking spaces for Brighton and Hove hotels too far away
11:40am Friday 28th February 2014 in News
Hotel bosses are warning that council plans to offer free parking for their guests will not help as the spaces will be too far away.
Councillors are considering offering free spaces at Hove’s Norton Road car park but hotel managers believe the car park is too far away for the majority of their visitors.
Nick Head, from the Ambassador Hotel in New Steine, who is a former head of Visit Sussex, said it is a “nice” idea but is not practical.
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He said: “The car park is miles away. It’s a great idea for someone who’s got a hotel near there but my customers won’t want to go a huge distance to park their cars for free.
“It’s a nice idea and I really hope they could think about a similar idea at the High Street or just off St James’s Street, which is empty a lot of the time because the prices are so high.”
Dan Maynard, executive manager at the Best Western hotel, added: “Norton car park is just dead space, it’s no use to man nor beast where it’s situated.
“The only people it serves are those in Hove Town Hall.
But it would be a lot more beneficial to do it in the middle of town. Are people really going to go all that way to Hove Town Hall to park for free just to walk back here again? I don’t think so.”
Anofficer’s report for the city council’s environment committee meeting on Tuesday also casts doubts on the plans.
The council has been looking at whether to cut prices at the Hove car park or whether or not to make it free at certain times.
Councillor Pete West, chairman of the environment committee, said parking was always a tricky issue for hotels and their guests and said the plans could be a way of helping visitors store their cars before going around the city.
The council report stated that previous attempts to offer free parking brought no significant change in use and doubted whether reducing prices at the Hove car park would help.
The report states: “It is not considered likely that a 50% reduction would have any significant impact on demand because tariffs are already relatively low and there is free parking available near Norton Road Car Park at Tesco.
“During the free parking days in December 2013 there was no significant change in use.”
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