A once-popular free carpark that has lost favour with motorists since parking fees were introduced will be reviewed.

The May review is part of the original decision to introduce parking fees at the carpark on the former Toyota site, on the corner of Reyburn and Carruth Streets.

The Whangarei District Council leased the site last year and turned it into a 74-space carpark which opened in October, offering free parking.

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However, the introduction of parking fees last month has seen a drop in vehicles.

The Northern Advocate visited the carpark on Friday, and found three cars at 10am, six at 11.30am and nine at 4pm.

The carpark had nine cars in it at 4pm last Friday. Photo / Danica McLean
The carpark had nine cars in it at 4pm last Friday. Photo / Danica McLean

It costs $2 an hour to park on Monday to Friday between 8am to 6pm.

Senior roading asset engineer Greg Monteith said the council will undertake a full review of the parking changes at the old Toyota site during May, and will report back to the council in June.

Parking fees have also been introduced at the nearby Town Basin carpark, and these will also be reviewed.

"This review will include occupancy rates - via physical counts undertaken several times a day, revenue collected, and how this looks in occupancy rates, and feedback from the Town Basin businesses."

Mr Monteith said the three-month review date came about as part of the resolution to implement the changes. Anything earlier than three months was deemed a little too early.

Mr Monteith said it cost about $37,000 to prepare the two carparks for paid parking, inlcuding markings, repairs, pedestrian access, signage and foundations for the Pay and Display machines.