SOME car parking charges for Coventry city centre shoppers are to be slashed because of long disruption from roadworks.
It comes as latest council figures show city centre football was down by 2.8 per cent for the first quarter of the year, much higher than the national decline of 0.8%
Footfall was also down 3.6% last year, and down 1.1% nationally.
The West Orchards Shopping Centre says Coventry City Council, which owns its car park, has agreed to help the centre reduce charges until August 2.
The roadworks at Ring Road junction 9 by the Belgrade Theatre – which are causing the disruption – continue until October.
The shopping centre declined to say whether business had been affected since they began in early April.
Any visitor parking for more than one hour will get the first hour free – saving them £1.
Charges are staggered in the short stay car park to deter long stayers. The second hour is £1.80, the third is £3, then the hourly rate rises to £6, then £8 then £10 for six hours.
Centre manager Andy Talbot said: “The result of the road works will mean improved access to the city centre and be a great improvement. I’m sure everyone will appreciate that.
“Unfortunately, in the meantime we have to put up with quite a lot of disruption, which can be quite stressful.
“We want to say a big thank you to our shoppers who are still visiting our centre, which is fully open amidst the disruption and free parking is a great way of doing it.
“We are delighted to be working closely with Coventry City Council to bring you this offer and although you’ll need to take a slightly altered route to get to our car park, we want to make sure our customers know our centre is still very much open for business with our great range of high street and big brand shops.”
The shopping centre’s car park will be signed from Junction 9 off the ring road.
Diverted traffic is been signposted through Tower Street and Lamb Street.
Coventry City Council said there are no other new parking offers for the city centre.
A spokesman added the council introduced a weekly ticket at various car parks in 2011 because of disruption. The offer is currently £12.50 for a weekly ticket at Whitefriars and Grove Street car parks.