The municipality of The Hague has introduced a flat fee of 50 euros for parking at the beach in Scheveningen and parts of the city centre. This means that, regardless of how long drivers park their cars for – whether it be five minutes or five hours – it’ll cost them a whopping 50 euros.
Want to park a car in Scheveningen or The Hague? That’ll cost 50 euros
The municipality announced the new parking fees last week, and hopes the high costs will discourage tourists and visitors from visiting busy parts of the city by car and using up parking spaces that should be left free for local permit holders. Instead, the municipality hopes drivers will park their cars in more affordable parking garages.
“We want the primary way of transportation to be your legs, and then the bicycle, public transport, and, last, cars,” a spokesperson for the municipality told The Guardian. “That doesn’t mean we don’t allow cars in our city: it means that if you have a short distance to travel, your primary way of transportation should be your legs. It benefits not only the environment but also travel times.”
The 50-euro day rate has been introduced as part of a new one-year trial, and is the latest in a string of measures introduced in The Hague to improve traffic flow and limit congestion in and around the city. Last year, for example, the municipality raised parking rates from 3,50 to 10 euros per hour, and placed clamps on almost 3.000 incorrectly parked cars.
Local businesses worried high prices could deter customers
The sharp rise in price has left many shocked and has been met with some criticism, with some local entrepreneurs worried that it could affect their businesses. Talking to Omroep West, Fleur Kruyt, who owns the Van Kleef distillery, suggested another solution: “If necessary, park for 15 or 20 minutes. Then you give people the opportunity to enter a store quickly, without the risk that people park there for a long time who have no business there.”
While the municipality of The Hague says it is aware of the criticism, it does point out, however, that many residents and permit holders are pleased with the change and are glad their cars will now be given priority in the city.
Thumb: kristof lauwers via Shutterstock.com.
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