Canberra's last parking paradise in Melbourne Avenue to be lost

The last bastion of free, unlimited parking in the heart of the territory is about to be shut down. 

Melbourne Avenue is something of a paradise for public servants escaping the first world horror of paid parking in the parliamentary zone. 

At present, they can leave their cars parked on this genteel thoroughfare with their bonnets shaded by native trees, with nary a parking inspector to be seen. 

It is an utopian arrangement in a city where others are paying $12 a day, or thousands of dollars a year, for the privilege of driving to work. 

But Territory and Municipal Services says it plans to propose the installation of timed parking signs along the avenue. 

This would stop public servants leaving their cars on the avenue all day while they worked in Parliament House. Car parks within parliament can become full during sitting weeks. 


The proposal to erect timed parking signs follows complaints to Roads ACT by residents of the avenue,  where the average property value sits in the multimillion-dollar range.

"The signage will be installed pending the outcome of consultation with directly affected residents," a TAMS spokeswoman said. 

"The ACT government is committed to managing the impact of parking encroachment in a number of residential areas as a result of paid parking being introduced on national land.

"Roads ACT has received some complaints from residents on Melbourne Avenue regarding increased parking levels."

The spokeswoman said pay parking was "not proposed for Melbourne Avenue within the residential area".

"The number of signs and timing for installation is dependent on the outcomes of the consultation process," she said.  

"When changes to parking are proposed on residential streets, consideration is given to safety and residential amenity."

Melbourne Avenue falls within the bailiwick of the ACT government. In recent weeks, territory inspectors have been keeping a close eye on areas directly surrounding the parliamentary zone where National Capital Authority inspectors have been enforcing paid parking since October 1



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