No change to CBD car parking

Generic image of outdoor dining

In April this year the Ballarat community was asked what they thought of the city’s public spaces and car parking.  

The City of Ballarat heard from more than 370 respondents, including 27 businesses, about how car parking and outdoor activation impact them.

The survey asked questions such as, would the community support an extension of parking to 7pm to assist businesses to free up car parking near their venue for customers. It also probed how community members travel into the CBD and where they would like to park.

The feedback received provided the City of Ballarat with clarity on the future use of the city’s central public spaces. Based on the results of the survey it was determined that Ballarat’s parking system will remain unchanged.

The survey results indicate many users believe the current parking system is working well for them.  

City of Ballarat Mayor, Cr Des Hudson said it’s great to be able to check in with the community and confirm that the system is working.  

“Parking is always a hot topic in Ballarat, and we thank the community for responding and letting us know what is working well, and what isn’t,” he said.    

The results from the survey also showed that people using the CBD car parks are mainly doing so for retail purposes followed by hospitality.  

Data collated by the City of Ballarat parking team indicated that between the hours of 9am and 5.30pm, 80 per cent of cars that are parked in the CBD stay for less than an hour, utilising the first-hour-free metered structure.

The data also indicated car parks on the North side of Sturt Street are more frequently occupied compared with the South side.

Out of the 69 available bays in the Armstrong Street North area, approximately two of these are occupied for more than three hours on any given day.  

The high turnover in this parking area indicates people are using the car spaces to pop in and out of the hospitality and retail venues, while those wishing to linger longer during the day are parking a block or two away.  

It also showed that the community largely thinks outdoor dining is effective in the city, with more than 60 per cent of respondents saying they were happy with the outdoor activations.  

“Now that the beautiful Spring weather is starting to emerge, it’s a great time to dine and socialise outdoors, with a wide range of outdoor dining spaces in the CBD for our residents and visitors to enjoy,” Cr Hudson said.  

New outdoor activation spaces that have been recently constructed include;  

  • Dining area at Sturt Street east.
  • Dining area at the 400 block of Sturt Street.  
  • Extended outdoor dining area at McKenzie Street.  
  • Extended outdoor dining areas on Armstrong Street North.  
  • Glass wind protection barriers and umbrella sockets in more than 80 venues across Ballarat.

The new outdoor activation at Alfred Deakin Place has already seen community members being able to gather and utilise the large screen to cheer on the Matildas at the FIFA Women’s World Cup.

The large screen and exhibition panels are now being used as part of the Foto Biennale, allowing people to enjoy some of the Art Gallery’s offerings outside.