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Call for review of free parking periods withdrawal

By Kyle Ritchie

MSP Stewart Stevenson has asked Aberdeenshire Council to review the impact on local businesses of its decision to withdraw free parking periods from its pay-and-display car parks after a bedding-in period.

Mr Stevenson said: “I have particular concerns regarding the impact this may have on the designated Regeneration Towns, all of which are located within my constituency and which have been the focus of much good work by the council working with the Scottish Government to access funding.

“Peterhead BID and business groups in other towns across Aberdeenshire expressed similar concerns at the potential for the town centre economy to be affected adversely by this decision.

MSP Stewart Stevenson at St Mary's car park in Banff, which is pay-and-display.
MSP Stewart Stevenson at St Mary's car park in Banff, which is pay-and-display.

“We’re not just talking about people having to pay 50p here or a pound there – it’s the impact the loss of even half-an-hour’s free parking can potentially have if people can get the same items at a supermarket where parking is free, or shopping online.

"It’s a psychological barrier to nipping into town for a short visit for one or two items.

“I’ve therefore asked Aberdeenshire Council to agree to include within their review of the implementation of the charges an assessment of the impact this is having on town centre businesses.

"I think it would be a sensible to include that element in the report coming back to the council.”

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