Motorists fork out €360m for parking their cars
IRISH motorists spent €360m last year on car parking fees, with a large part of the money being paid to local authorities for on-street parking.
A new report from the Irish Parking Association, which represents car park operators, said city and county councils took in €115m last year from shoppers and workers parking on streets in towns and cities across the country.
The Consumers' Association of Ireland last night called for prices to be reduced, adding that local authorities should do everything they could to encourage people to shop locally.
"I understand why some want to avoid workers parking all day and not leaving room for shoppers, but it would make so much sense at this time if incentives were introduced to assist consumers to get to shops, and business would benefit from footfall," said CAI chief executive Dermott Jewell.
"The councils keep saying they have no money. They have problems with collecting rates, but parking is cash and immediate. It's an overly priced cash cow in a lot of areas, and has been for a long time. The pricing is crazy.
"It's long past the time when the prices came down. Perhaps these prices were acceptable a number of years ago, but right now it's probably one of the worst values."
The report shows that Dublin City Council generated one-tenth of the total collected last year, or €36m.
Cork, Galway, Limerick and Waterford city councils took in almost €20m.
Smaller councils are also raking in millions every year, with Kilkenny taking in €3m, followed by Clonmel (€1.9m), Wexford (€1.8m), Sligo (€1.7m) and Drogheda (€1.3m). Bray, Naas, Ennis and Castlebar each received more than €1m.
The report also revealed: l Dublin, Shannon and Cork airports generated €52m.
- Rail passengers using Iarnrod Eireann and Luas parking sites paid over €1m.
- The two main hospitals in Cork took in €2.8m; UCH Galway and Kerry General took €1m each. Hotels and hospitals generated €25m.