ARA supports Vic Govt change to clearway times

Posted by Daniel Palmer on 30th April 2008

Peak retail industry body the Australian Retailers Association (ARA) supports with some reservation the Victorian Government’s changes to extend clearway times in and around Melbourne CBD and is calling for councils to ease local parking restrictions.

According to Executive Director Richard Evans, extending the clearway times to 6.30-10am and 3-7pm will help ease the increasing traffic congestion problem in Melbourne but there needs to be a co-joining process with local councils to encourage retail trade.

“While easing congestion will certainly attract more people to retail outlets, there needs to be extra parking allowed in side streets to cater for the demand. Local councils need to look at easing restricted parking in these streets and reduce some permit parking plans to ensure local retail trade is not affected. There needs to be a clear counter- balance,” Evans said.

“While we support the changes, in these difficult economic times retail traders don’t need extra pressure placed on their trade and need to be reassured that Government at all levels is listening to them during the implementation process.”

The changes are part of a range of short-term measures to be included in a new congestion package that has been pushed by the Victorian Government, following a summit of transport groups in January.

The Australian Retailers Association (ARA) is the peak industry body in Australia’s $292 billion retail sector which employs over 1.2 million people.