Free Saturday parking in Bedford will launch in November - with late night opening in two multi-storey car parks planned too.
Mayor Dave Hodgson has announced the planned start date for the Mayor’s Free Parking Deal along with additional measures to support Bedford’s night time economy.
Work is underway to get the Mayor’s Free Parking Deal in place as soon as possible, in order that traders and shoppers can benefit from the new arrangements during the all-important Christmas shopping period.
The start date for the Free Parking Deal will be Saturday, November 23, in time for the main Christmas shopping period.
He said: “We want shoppers and traders to start benefitting from the Free Parking Deal as soon as possible.
“We are sending out a message loud and clear that Bedford is open for business, and issuing a rallying cry across Bedford and beyond for people to support the town centre.
“After three straight years of car park charge freezes while they are rising elsewhere, the Free Parking Deal is designed to make the decisive difference when people are choosing where to shop on a Saturday. People care deeply about their town centre, and if we work together to promote what Bedford has to offer, including the first two hours’ parking free on Saturdays from November 23rd, the benefits to the town, its traders and shoppers will be tremendous.”
He has also confirmed details of further parking initiatives to support the night time economy and make enjoying an evening out in Bedford a more attractive and convenient option.
In response to requests from businesses for further evening parking to support town centre restaurants and other businesses, Lurke Street Multi-Storey Car Park will remain open every Friday and Saturday until 12.30am.
This request has come from businesses themselves, and Mayor Dave and Bedford Borough Council will be working with businesses to promote the scheme and help to make it a success for Bedford.
In addition, Queen Street multi car park,close to a string of restaurants in the Tavistock Street and Broadway area, will be open 24 hours a day, seven days a week under the new arrangements.
Normal tariffs will apply for the late opening of both Lurke Street and Queen Street Car Parks