Council recognises the importance of building Palmerston as ‘A Place for People’. 

One practical way for Council to deliver this is to ensure parking across the City Centre is well managed and suited to the needs to the City Centre. Effective parking promotes movement, creates a sense of place encourages economic growth and meets the needs of the community and business owners.

Project information 


Council undertook a study to understand how parking in the City Centre currently functions.

The study involved parking surveys and car park occupancy sampling, reviewing the policy framework and investigating parking principles and best current practice. 

The results of this study provided the following significant findings:

  • Public parking behaviour in the City Centre is not measurably altered by pricing changes at the current levels.
  • The greatest demand is generally in locations where all-day parking is available.
  • There appears to be an opportunity to consolidate and amend parking zones to improve utilisation and better meet actual, observed demand.

Proposed changes


The results of this study informed the development of the Background Report, City Centre Parking Strategy and Implementation Plan, along with proposed prioritised actions.

Council is implementing the following changes to parking in the City Centre (as outlined in the Implementation Plan):

Changes to the cost of parking

  • Free parking will be introduced, and time limits enforced, in certain timed restricted parking areas, subject to a valid ticket being displayed (note: the charge of $4.00 for all-day parking will be retained).
  • Hours for timed parking will be changed, and regulated, from 8.00am to 4.00pm Monday to Friday, for greater convenience. 
  • Free parking will be permitted on weekends and public holidays, with no daily time limit.
  • All-day parking permits will be made available for three-month periods (currently available to purchase for a 12-month or pro-rata remaining duration). 
  • Council will introduce a car parking app to provide more payment options for users.
  • Parking meter programming will restrict a new ticket from being issued within a timed parking area if a ticket has already been obtained. This will be linked to the vehicle registration number.
  • Council will be actively enforcing parking to ensure effective turnover of spaces.

Changes to parking time limits

Location Proposed change   Current      
Rolyat Street, Maluka Drive and Wilson Street 2-hour parking   4-hour parking      
South-west end of Palmerston Shopping Centre All-day, 1-hour and 2-hour parking   2-hour parking      
Frances Drive and Hillson Street 1-hour parking   2-hour parking      
Northwest of Palmerston Recreation Centre 2-hour parking   1-hour parking      
Hillson Street car park Retain as all-day parking, however, introduce charging to be consistent with other all-day parking spaces.   All-day parking      
Regulated hours for all-day parking 8.00am to 4.00pm   8.00am to 5.00pm      


Parking will not be regulated on weekends and public holidays. This means that there will be no parking charges for all day parking spaces and no time limits enforced. 

Map: Changes to parking time limits 
Map: Parking time limits effective as at March 2019 

Feedback 


Council sought feedback from the community, local businesses and building owners regarding the proposed changes for a three week period, from Wednesday 27 March to Wednesday 17 April 2019.

The community and local businesses could provide feedback on the proposed changes by:

Pop-up stalls 

Date: Thursday 4 April 2019
Time: 12.00pm-2.00pm and 4.00pm-6.00pm
Location: Palmerston Shopping Centre

Date: Saturday 6 April 2019 
Time: 10.00am-2.00pm
Location: Palmerston Shopping Centre

Comment in writing to:

   Using the online form below
  palmerston@palmerston.nt.gov.au 
 PO Box 1, Palmerston NT 0831

Council engaged True North to facilitate the consultation process, who spoke to City Centre visitors, businesses who operate in the City Centre and building owners.

Next steps 


Council considered all feedback received during consultation and subsequently adopted the City Centre parking Study documents at its ordinary meeting on Tuesday 7 May 2019.

Changes to parking will take effect from 1 July 2019.

Frequently asked questions

Why is Council making changes to parking in the City Centre? 

This Council committed to reviewing City Centre car parking and recognises the importance of building Palmerston as ‘A Place for People’. 

One practical way for Council to deliver this is to ensure parking across the City Centre is well managed and suited to the needs of the Palmerston community and visitors. Effective parking promotes movement, creates a sense of place encourages economic growth and meets the needs of the community and business owners.

What changes are proposed?

Council is proposing a number of changes in the short term to parking time limits in the City Centre, along with changes to the cost of parking. 

Some specific changes are proposed to the time limit on parking in the following areas: 

  • Roylat Street, Maluka Drive and Wilson Street: change from 2hr to 4hr parking. 
  • South-west end of Palmerston Shopping Centre: change from 2hr to all day, 1hr, and 2hr parking. 
  • Frances Drive and Hillson Street: change from 2hr to 1hr parking. 
  • Northwest of Palmerston Recreation Centre: change from 1hr to 2hr parking.
  • Hillson Street car park: retain as all day parking, however introduce charging to be consistent with other all-day parking spaces.
  • The regulated hours for all day parking be changed from 8am to 5pm to 8am to 4pm. 
  • Parking will continue to not be regulated on weekends and public holidays. This means that there will be no parking charges for all-day parking spaces and no time limits enforced. 

These changes seek to achieve better utilisation of parking areas in the City Centre, improve parking turn over, and align with best practice.  

As part of delivering the above changes and to encourage the achievement of these outcomes, Council is also seeking to: 

  • Introduced free parking in timed limited parking spaces, subject to a valid ticket being displayed. 
  • Maintain the charge of $4.00 for all-day parking. 
  • Maintain free parking on weekends and public holidays with no daily time limit.
  • Make three monthly parking permits available. 
  • Introduce a parking app. 

Council will also be proactively enforcing the time limits to ensure turnover is occurring in the City Centre. To assist with this, Council will also be making changes to parking meter programming to restrict a new ticket from being issued within a timed parking area if a ticket has already been obtained. This will be linked to the vehicle registration number and intends to prevent 'meter feeding'. 

If you would like more detail on the proposed changes, this can be found in the Draft Implementation Plan. 

Why is Council proposing changes to the parking time limits in certain areas? 

The study that Council has undertaken into car parking included conducting several parking surveys across October, December and February to understand parking behaviour in the City Centre.

These surveys reviewed car park occupancy and turn over through the recording of number plates at several intervals throughout the day for each car space.

A number of key areas were identified as being significantly underutilised, where other areas have been identified as being at high capacity, demonstrating that there was an opportunity to consolidate and amend parking zones to improve utilisation and better meet actual observed demand.  

The changes proposed seek to meet the demand that Council has observed, through the parking surveys it has undertaken. 

What parking zones are proposed? 

Currently Council has a range of parking spaces being: 15 minute, 30 minute, 1-hour, 2-hour, and all-day. The changes will introduce 4-hours parking spaces to this mix of parking zones. 

What parking zones do I need a ticket in?

 You will need to display a valid parking ticket in the following zones: 

  • 1-hour parking 
  • 2-hour parking
  • 4-hour parking
  • All-day parking

The requirement for a ticket to be displayed in the one hour parking zones will assist with achieving behaviour change in the city centre and ensuring turn over is achieved. 

Council acknowledges that this may be an inconvenience, and is investigating a parking app to provide more convenience to those using the parking spaces. 

Why do I need a ticket if parking is free?

To ensure there is turn over in parking where time limits apply, Council will be undertaking additional enforcement activity. To effectively achieve this, a valid parking ticket will be required. These tickets will be issued free from the parking meter. 

Council will also be investigating a parking app to increase convenience to customers in obtaining a valid parking ticket. 

Why aren’t the all-day parking areas free? 

Currently the time limited parking spaces have capacity to improve occupancy. Increasing occupancy in these spaces through free (time limited) parking, will assist with encouraging patronage in the City Centre and access to local businesses. 

Alternatively, all day parking areas are at a high occupancy and alternative transport options should be encouraged. A charge in these areas will assist with ensuring parking behaviour in all-day parking areas is effectively managed

The provision of parking in the City Centre also comes at a cost to Council. To offset this cost, and to assist with managing parking behaviour, Council proposes to maintain the cost for all day parking spaces. 

On weekends, will the underground parking areas be unregulated (ie. no time limits)?

The changes only apply to parking spaces that Council manages. Council is not responsible for deciding parking time limits on private property, which includes existing underground parking areas. 

Project Stages

  • Open This consultation is open for contributions.
  • Under Review Council is considering feedback.
  • Closed This consultation is closed for contributions.