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RMIT-Monash car park number supports driving for more wines and sidewalk meals in Melbourne

“Only with the support of the state government can Yarra continue to meet the expectations of subsidizing outdoor dining.”

Yarra advisers will vote on Tuesday on whether to reconsider the fee structure, at least until state government funding becomes clear, under a motion by independent socialist Stephen Jolly.

Neighboring councils are also expected to introduce fees once capacity restrictions on indoor trade loosen significantly, with parklets remaining even beyond the pandemic.

Chris De Gruyter, lead researcher for the discussion paper Street Space Allocation and Use in Melbourne’s Activity Centers, said street parking should be converted where appropriate, as parked cars are the least efficient use of shopping streets .

Looking at 56 locations in Melbourne at the end of last year, researchers said there was a lack of space for pedestrians. On average, pedestrians made up 56% of all road users, but were allocated only 32.2% of the streetscape.

Parked cars represented only 12.8% of road users but occupied 21% of road space, while general traffic (cars, motorcycles, trucks and cyclists) accounted for 18.4% of the population of the street but used 29.1% of the space.

The numbers were more striking in some places. In Puckle Street stores in Moonee Ponds, pedestrians made up more than 80 percent of road users, but only had 35 percent of the streetscape.

Melbourne City Council has already pledged to expand trails and discourage motorists in parts of the CBD.

Dr De Gruyter said there is no one-size-fits-all solution and the changes will not suit all places, but the way we use our streets is set to be turned upside down and parklets will always offer more space to walk for pedestrians than a parked car.

“It gives even more room to cross. This gives more buffer to traffic, which is more pleasant as a pedestrian walking in a safer and more pleasant environment, ”said Dr De Gruyter, of the RMIT Center for Urban Research.

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He said it was “amazing” to see the normal, and often unnecessarily, space reserved for parked cars reallocated since the start of the pandemic.

Yarra’s independent adviser Herschel Landes is keen to consider policies for retailing on parking spaces, saying the council prematurely decided to freeze costs from April.

A state government spokeswoman said the boards should encourage hotel businesses to operate safely against COVID.

“Opening up our streets and community spaces will be of huge benefit to businesses and councils, and we will soon have more to say about our plans for the outdoor economy. “

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