There once was an era when free parking in malls was the usual thing. Today, it’s pretty difficult to find a mall or other shopping establishment that won’t charge you to patronize them or even use their parking facilities. But, the good news is, our days of being concerned about hourly parking rates at malls and other similar establishments may be coming to an end once this bill becomes a law. A lawmaker from South Cotabato has introduced a bill, the Free Parking Act of 2022, requiring businesses to offer free parking to their patrons.
What is the Free Parking Act of 2022?
The Free Parking Act of 2022 mandates that existing shopping centers, supermarkets, and other businesses offer free parking to their customers or patron. The bill has the goal of eliminating or lowering parking fees or charges at various public facilities. According to the bill, this legislation covers the appropriate use of parking spaces by relevant customers in malls and shopping centers.
Rep. Peter Miguel from South Cotabato, 2nd District introduced House Bill No. 5292, or the Free Parking Act of 2022, with the end mind that parking spaces are:
- just a basic amenity
- a matter of courtesy to customers
- safeguarding their rights and
- encouraging more business
- fostering a healthy environment for enterprises.
Further, in his explanatory note, he claims that it will also reduce street parking and, as a result, traffic congestion. This view is not only reasonable and logical but it is also supported by actual practice in other countries, such as the United States of America, where these establishments own and operate free parking spaces. Meanwhile in the Philippines, in Metro Manila to be specific, parking in commercial establishments costs around P50 as a flat rate, with additional charges per hour.
Three advantages of the Free Parking Act of 2022
- Balancing the interest of mall owners and its consumers
With the help of this Act, the State can be able to successfully promote consumer welfare without jeopardizing the commercial interests of mall owners. Further, to uphold industry and company standards of conduct while also protecting consumer interests.
- Free parking attracts more consumers
Since a company’s success primarily depends on the loyalty of its customers, it is only fair to provide free parking spaces for its customers in order to increase the establishment’s desirability and the profitability of the nearby businesses. Keep in mind that customers will always prefer to shop in malls that have more secure parking spaces.
- Making the customer experience positive
Being faced with a traffic jam in the parking lot when going shopping is a regular annoyance in today’s fast-paced society. This poor first impression has an adverse effect on how customers view the store and may very well influence their choice of where to shop the next time.
Who is eligible for free parking under the Free Parking Act of 2022?
If the measure becomes law, those who are eligible for the free parking are genuine customers of the businesses and public establishments or legitimate patrons. A legitimate patron as defined in the bill is a consumer who has made transactions from the establishment. This means that free parking is only available to customers who have made actual purchases or used the establishment’s products and services.
How does an individual get free parking under the Free Parking Act of 2022?
According to the measure, legitimate customers can get free parking if they make a total minimum purchase of P500 with proof of receipt from the establishment and use the parking space for less than two hours. Meanwhile, owners of malls and other establishments will receive tax benefits to help offset the cost of offering free parking spaces and the loss of revenue from parking fee collection.
Does more parking space reduce traffic?
The short answer is no. Vehicle volume in EDSA has already surpassed its most recent pre-pandemic levels, according to data from the Land Transportation Office, and limits are still being relaxed. MMDA data also demonstrates that, according to the authority’s yearly average daily traffic counts, private vehicles occupy 80% of road space.
However, recent data from the Japan International Cooperation Agency revealed that only 11% of Filipino households are in possession of a private automobile.
According to experts and urban planners, adding more roads and parking places for automobiles won’t solve the problem of traffic congestion; instead, they would simply serve to increase the economic phenomena of induced demand.
Traffic will still increase regardless of how many roads the government builds or opens because opening new roads causes induced demand. In order to reduce traffic congestion, the government must be able to come up with proper measures to reduce people’s reliance on personal vehicles and improve further alternative modes like active and public transportation.
Some alternative solutions to decongest traffic problems
In the Philippines, there is a problem with traffic, particularly in major cities like Manila, the nation’s capital with 13.5 million residents in the metro region. According to TomTom’s traffic index, Manila is the 18th most congested city in the world, with 98 hours, or four full days, lost annually to traffic.
The Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA)’s most recent data, however, indicates that there are only 2.9 million registered vehicles in Metro Manila. And it is anticipated that this number would increase, making the traffic situation worse. Hence, as stated above, providing more free parking spaces does not resolve the problem of traffic congestion instead it only creates more issues.
- Improve commuter-friendly infrastructures
To alleviate the misery of commuters, the government should give regular financing to much-needed infrastructure in order to promote walking and biking and to address the paucity of public transportation statewide.
- Increase resident parking areas
Only centrally located streets in most towns and cities have extensive parking regulations, which often include residents’ parking and pay-and-display parking. More and more people are choosing to drive and park outside of limited parking zones due to traffic, expensive parking, and rising bus and train prices. The remaining distance is subsequently covered by walking or occasionally cycling.
As more commuters drive around hunting for parking places, this is worsening traffic and pollution in cities. Residents thus find it less enjoyable and safe to go riding and walking. The solution is to expand parking restrictions in a coordinated manner much farther out from the city’s center.
- Urban Design and Planning
The government can impose days when there are no cars in certain parts of larger cities. Zoning regulations require mixed-use developments, particularly in business districts. For instance, increasing the supply of affordable homes in Ortigas CBD could persuade more individuals to forgo purchasing new cars. This might also promote the development of infrastructure for cycling.
Further, using a grid plan with a fused grid road network topology rather than Metro Manila’s current disorganized network topology, even though it could be too late. This will lessen traffic on major thoroughfares like EDSA.
Similar legislation to the Free Parking Act of 2022
While the Philippines’ urban areas face traffic congestion problems, several lawmakers have attempted to enact parking space legislation.
- No Garage, No Car bill
The No Garage, No Car law, which aims to make it necessary for prospective car owners to have their own parking space before buying and registering their car, was also previously submitted to the House of Representatives in an effort to ease traffic on sidewalks and curbside and to lessen traffic congestion.
- Proof of Parking Space Act
Under this bill, Metro Manila-based individuals and organizations would only be permitted to purchase vehicles following the execution of an affidavit verifying that they have secured, whether through acquisition, a parking space for the automobile they wish to purchase.
Whether this is done by making it a permanent part of their home or building structure or by leasing a facility, motor vehicle owners should be held accountable for providing a parking area for their own automobiles.
The purpose of the measure is not to stop people from purchasing automobiles; as long as they have a parking place of their own and do not park on the road, they are free to purchase as many automobiles as they like.
5 Justifications for Needing a Parking Space for your House and Lot
In relation to having free parking space in mall establishments, it is only proper to consider this first and foremost in buying a house and lot.
There are numerous things to consider when considering buying your first house and lot or any real estate. The proximity to amenities like schools, hospitals, and parks is one of the most crucial factors. But it’s also crucial to think about getting a parking spot because it not only gives you more room for your car but also makes your money go further.
- Maintaining your car’s security in a parking space
You have a duty to maintain your car safe since it is also a product of your hard earned money, hence a valuable possession. The closest thing to having your car kept up at home is parking. The majority of parking spots in a house and lot are located within the premises.
You won’t ever have to worry about finding a parking space with BRIA Homes’ well-designed yet reasonably priced house and lot packages. This is an investment that will give you security and enable you to better prepare for the future with your family.
- Parking makes moving things easier
When you have your own parking space at home rather than parking it somewhere far from your house, carrying groceries or other big stuff can not be a hassle at all. It need not be difficult or exhausting to carry new objects into the house. The entire process—from getting out of the car to set the items on the counter—can be completed in a single trip if there is nearby parking.
- Parking can become an extra space
The majority of folks adore turning their parking space into extra living space. Parking can also function as an addition to your home by adding a second living space or storage space. Having more room to use and employ for your personal requirements contributes to feeling more at ease overall. It could also be used as a venue for your next birthday party or any other occasion.
A residence with parking places has a greater chance of making money than one without. As a result, there has been an enormous rise in demand for parking places.
- Parking can be beneficial in severe weather
By having your own parking space within your premises, your car can be protected from any kind of weather. May it be a strong typhoon or the scorching heat of the sun. The heated feeling you get when getting into a car after parking in the blazing sun is another thing that most automobile owners detest. You won’t have to experience the sensation of being inside a microwave because a parking space can provide shade for your car.
- Parking increases your home’s value
One of a home’s key components is the parking spaces. They facilitate the evaluation of your home and its location by potential purchasers, but they are also crucial to home equity. The number of parking spaces you have and how close they are to your home determines the value of your lot. Property experts recommend utilizing an existing parking space or adding one to your home as one of the most important ways to boost the value of your property.
Thinking of buying your first house and lot? Check BRIA Home’s website to inquire regarding their finest townhouses. As a matter of fact, one of the advantages of townhouses is that parking space is already included with your purchase. In contrast to condominiums, townhouse units normally come with a parking space without additional costs or separate property titles.
Read also: Should You Buy a Townhouse?
Think of Bria Homes as your safe haven or as an investment in real estate that will provide you with comfort, safety, and a sense of home. Bria Homes is still offering Filipinos top-notch, affordably priced homes and lots that consider their needs. Choose Bria Homes if you want to have clear options, fairly priced homes, lots, and condominiums that make you feel safe and will provide you with the finest quality homes if you’re seeking an affordable house and lot to help you achieve your goals. Filipino families may return home with pride thanks to Bria Homes, which truly fulfills the dream of owning a home.