A tenant next to the Chinese Consulate says people getting their visas are constantly using his company's parks.

Albie Neal of AlphaTech in Manukau said he's been dealing with the issue of park pinching for nearly a decade, spending considerable time and energy asking people to move.

In December last year he decided he'd had enough, giving Amalgamated Car Parking Services the authority to monitor his car parks and apply wheel clamps or tow vehicles using parks when they weren't allowed.

Since then, he estimates unapproved use of AlphaTech parks has decreased by 70 per cent.


It has also freed him and other staff up to get on with their jobs.

"We don't want anyone to be clamped, we don't want anyone to get a breach notice. We would rather it didn't happen," Neal said.

"The clamping is a blunt instrument but it's the only instrument we've tried other than using up our own resources trying to shoo [motorist] away all the time."

Herald reporter Holly Ryan said she was clamped while in her car outside the Chinese consulate in Manukau. Photo / Greg Bowker
Herald reporter Holly Ryan said she was clamped while in her car outside the Chinese consulate in Manukau. Photo / Greg Bowker

• READ MORE: 'Clamped while in the car: Auckland motorists crying foul at clampers' fees'.

Consumer New Zealand has called for wheel clamping to be banned, and the AA's Mark Stockdale said private parking enforcement needed to be regulated to "stop cowboy operators clamping people willy nilly".

A 10-minute grace period, which has been outlined as best practice in a voluntary code of conduct by the AA and other industry stakeholders, was not an option for AlphaTech because of the sheer volume of people coming to the Consulate every day, Neal said.

The Chinese Consulate has only 11 parks and more than 100 people would pass through every day, he estimated.

As well as parking, there was also the issue of visa queues so long people were in front of the car parks at AlphaTech.


"Providing any grace period is not something we can consider. They are our car parks and we need them clear."

Neal said he did not get involved in how Amalgamated chose to regulate parking, which it did for several businesses located at 630 Great South Rd, but he trusted the man who monitored the parks was doing a good job.

"He does an extremely difficult job, he does it calmly. I wouldn't want his job for all the tea in China."

• READ MORE: 'Consumer watchdog: Ban wheel clamping'.

When asked whether he would support breach notices being issued instead of wheel clamping, Neal said if that created the same disincentive as clamping he would.

However, he was not convinced that would be the case.

"I don't see that fixing the problem, I see it expanding the problem because the fine is less."

Ultimately, Neal just wanted people to stop using his car parks so they were free for staff and legitimate customers.

It was a major issue and he wished he didn't have to deal with it, Neal said.

"We need a method that future people coming for a visa know not to park in our area.

"We can't continue operating day to day fighting this flood of people using our car parks. Whether it's the clamping or the breach notice."

The Herald has tried contacting the Chinese Consulate but was unable to reach anyone for comment.