Comment: Free parking in Kirkcaldy - do it, do it now

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The decision to end discount parking charges for our town centre is disappointing.

The uptake may not have been enough to justify continuing, but the whole project feels like a missed opportunity.

It needed much more fan fare to be wholly effective – a sustained campaign with a clear and hugely positive message visible to every single visitor as they came into town.

Instead, it ends with a bit of a whimper.

So, where does our town centre go from here?

Clearly, some councillors are inching towards the notion of a possible free trial.

But reverting the issue back to transportation for other ideas is just too inward thinking. Don’t retailers get a say?

The message from businesses, and customers, however. is already crystal clear – bring in free parking.

Do it – and do it now.

That should be the mandate handed to transportation along with a very short timescale to make it happen.

Cut through the red tape, create a simple trial scheme and then ensure it is promoted with real purpose.

We said at the start of 2018 this was a year of delivery for Kirkcaldy on a variety of projects – including parking.

This town has waited long enough.

We’ve talked, we’ve consulted, we’ve consulted a little bit more, we’ve gone back and forth.

Now, it is time to see some action. Every single councillor and officer with input to the town centre needs a ‘can do’ approach rather than finding reasons not to innovative. If that means cutting through red tape and shaking up existing practices, so be it.

Do it – and do it now.

Our town centre cannot continue to be hampered by parking charges. For it to survive, it has to be on an even keel with other towns and our own retail park.

Do it – and do it now.