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Council looks to double fees and slash free parking times for drivers on the southside

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Motorists on southside of city facing increased charges for on-street parking permits

Motorists on southside of city facing increased charges for on-street parking permits

Motorists on southside of city facing increased charges for on-street parking permits

Motorists in south Dublin are facing increased parking charges, including a 100pc rise in the cost of a resident's parking permit and a reduction in free parking periods.

South Dublin County Council wants to cut the current grace period for parking of 30 minutes due to claims that motorists are abusing the existing system by repeatedly obtaining tickets offering half an hour of free parking from machines.

The proposed changes are contained in new draft parking bye-laws which include increasing the annual cost of an on-street parking permit for residents from €20 to €40.

The cost of a visitor's parking permit is set to increase from €20 to €60-a-year, with a limit of two permits per household.

Electric

The council is also proposing changes to charges for pay and display parking, which currently range from €0.75 to €1.50 an hour.

Under the new bye-laws, there will be a standard fee across all areas of €1 an hour, with a minimum fee of €0.50 and a maximum stay of three hours.

A new all-day fee of €3 will be charged at park and ride facilities.

However, the cost for vehicles parked in electric charging bays is being reduced to €0.50 for three hours from €1 an hour.

The council is also proposing to reduce the grace period for parking within its administrative area from the current 30 minutes to 15 minutes.

It claimed the existing policy of allowing motorists to park for free for 30 minutes, which was introduced on a pilot basis in 2016, had never been reviewed or given a statutory basis.

"As a result, this incurred considerable revenue loss to the council as in many cases repeat free tickets were dispensed," it said.

Income from parking fees and fines has fallen from a peak of €986,781 in 2012 to €712,877 last year - a drop of 28pc over the period.

Fine Gael councillor and deputy mayor, David McManus, said he anticipated that any reduction in the 30-minute grace period will prove the most controversial of the proposed changes.

"It is going to have a negative effect on businesses in villages like Rathfarnham and Templeogue," said Mr McManus.

"It's understandable for the council to want to address an area where they have suffered a loss of revenue and to not allow motorists to park in the centre of towns and villages all day."

Mr McManus said he would be seeking changes to the draft bye-laws to allow motorists to have a 30-minute grace period per day per vehicle, which would prevent abuse of the system if property enforced.

He pointed out that South Dublin County Council would still have the cheapest parking fees in Dublin after the changes.

Fingal County Council also has a basic rate of €1 an hour.

The council has begun a public consultation on the new draft bye-laws, with a deadline for submissions of September 11.

Rationale

It is also planning to extend pay and display parking to a number of locations including Monastery Rise, Clondalkin and Fourth Avenue, Tallaght, as well as the Tallaght Courthouse and Whitehall Road West in Perrystown.

Paid parking is also proposed for a number of new areas in Rathfarnham - Barton Drive, Butterfield Crescent and the Rosemount Shopping Centre car park on Marian Road.

Several new locations for parking bays for electrical vehicles are also planned, as well as a new park and ride facility at Cookstown Way in Tallaght.

The council said there had been no review of the existing parking bye-laws which were introduced in 2010.

"The rationale for pay and display parking controls remains the same - to provide an efficient service ensuring that parking within the county is carefully managed," the council added.