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MYKI card holders should have exclusive access to carparks at Melbourne suburban railway stations under a radical plan to ease parking congestion.
Many station carparks are full from early morning, often because non-commuters are taking up spaces.
At the Municipal Association of Victoria members’ forum, Metro Trains boss Andrew Lezala was quizzed about the prospect of only allowing myki commuters into car parks.
MAV president Bill McArthur said the idea of myki-only carparks was part of a wide-ranging transport discussion.
“But it’s an area of investigation to free up carparks.’’
Melbourne City Councillor Stephen Mayne said Mr Lezala agreed “with fencing carparks with Myki only access”.
Congestion is common at many suburban station carparks including Heidelberg where morning shift workers at the neighbouring Austin Hospital take spaces from 6am.
Banyule Mayor Craig Langdon said it would be a great initiative at Heidelberg.
Public Transport Users Association’s Daniel Bowen says the idea is good in theory.
“We can land someone on the moon but we can’t seem to solve the problem of carparking at train stations,’’ he said.
Public Transport Minister Jacinta Allan said the state government was investing millions to create extra carpark spaces at railway stations.
Public Transport Users Association spokesman Daniel Bowen said there needed to be better links so commuters could use tram or bus, or choose to cycle or walk to the station.
“In theory, using the myki for this sounds good but perhaps you include a carpark charge in the train fare,’’ Mr Bowen said.
Travellers who use Perth’s SmartRider ticket can also pay for their carparking with the same pass.
Metro Trains spokeswoman Sammie Black said the idea had not been raised with the State Government but it was an issue in many locations.
Ms Black said the number of non-commuters using car parks was unknown.
“No data is available, but we recognise it may be an issue in some locations, like shopping and employment strips, where there is limited on-street parking.’’
In 2014, a plan was devised for transport officers to patrol carparks at Box Hill, Burwood, Camberwell, Heidelberg, Highett and Murrumbeena stations to fine non-commuters $89.
This article first appeared on www.heraldsun.com.au
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