TENANTS are furious with Armidale Food Emporium centre management after they requested Council reduce parking time from three to two hours.
Staff say there was no consultation and they had no idea management had asked for the change.
House worX owner John Watts said he spoke to other tenants in the centre and none of them were informed.
“I called centre management and they told me that Council was responsible for the change to the parking hours,” he said.
“If this happens it will be detrimental to our business ... we’re going to do whatever we can to stop this from happening.”
Centre management refused to comment and referred The Armidale Express to their lawyers who confirmed carpark titles were owned by Armidale Food Emporium.
“Armidale Food Emporium looks to Council to make decisions, including as to hours of parking, which maximise the use of the carpark,” the centre’s lawyer Peter Pardy said.
But an Armidale Regional Council spokeswoman confirmed it was centre management who asked Council to reduce the parking time.
“The management of the Coles Centre requested a reduction in the parking time from three hours to two hours to free up parking spaces for customers,” she said.
“The majority of parking spaces within the Coles complex are owned by the Coles Centre.
The Traffic Advisory Committee has supported the change despite a study recommending three-hour parking.
They said there was adequate long-term parking opportunities for staff in close proximity to the complex.
Ocean Shore Seafood owner Piper Ides said he expected the shop would start to lose clients if the parking hours are changed.
“It’s bad enough now with three hour parking,” he said.
“Customers are not going to come here and take the risk of getting a $100 fine when they’re coming here to do their shopping.
“I know for a fact that they will start going to Armidale Central where they can park all day.”
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