Coles is looking to increase parking spaces at its Coburg North Village after a flood of visitors in its first month overwhelmed existing facilities. Coles spokeswoman Martine Alpins said customer numbers exceeded expectations. "We plan to increase the number of parking spaces in the coming weeks to ensure customers continue to have a great shopping experience ... "And are able actually to take their shopping home. Unfortunately, some bureaucrats believe that shops would sell more goods if customers did not drive to the shops. How would they get their purchases home? Teleportation?
Sydney Road traders would experience an increase in ... spending in their stores if on-street parking was removed, a community wellbeing expert says. Dr Hannah Badland, a McCaughey VicHealth Centre senior research fellow, said research had shown limiting car parking resulted in people staying longer in shopping strips and making more purchases.A chasm the size of the Grand Canyon runs between logic and that argument as it relates to the needs of everyday shoppers; but Dr Badland cannot see it, and sails blithely on with her contention:
"More purchases are made ... by pedestrians and they tend to linger longer in the area and enjoy the cafes and restaurants."No supporting evidence, of course. Presumably while you're sitting around in a café like Ernest Hemingway's Jake Barnes in La Rotonde, your weekly trolley load of shopping attaches itself to a homing donkey.
On the Letters page, Louise of Brunswick perforates Badland's balloon of bureaucratic lunacy in one crisp sentence:
" ... I usually park on Sydney Road ... because I am either buying too much to carry any distance easily, or I am shopping briefly on my way home from elsewhere."