A public consultation is underway over proposals for new parking tariffs in Cornwall Council car parks.

The proposals seek to reduce the number of different tariffs across Cornwall’s 135 pay and display and pay-on-foot car parks.

Instead, car parks will be grouped into one of three ‘zones’ – Zone A being the busiest areas which are well served by public transport and walking and cycle routes.

Regular car park users will continue to benefit from vastly reduced ‘multi-use’ tickets through the Just Park app however, and blue badge holders with adapted vehicles or vehicles exempt from car tax will continue to be able to park for free.

Significant investment has gone into improving transport infrastructure in Cornwall to help give residents choices about how they travel – particularly over shorter distances.

The bus fares pilot and recently introduced £2 cap on single journeys has significantly cut the cost of bus travel, while walking and cycle routes have also created better links between town centres and residential areas.

Connor Donnithorne, Cornwall Council cabinet portfolio holder for transport, said: “The impact of carbon emissions on our planet is clear and we all have a role to play in reducing our carbon footprint and considering how we make our journeys if we are to tackle climate change. So, we’ve already put initiatives in place to encourage different ways to travel.

“However, we realise that they won’t suit everyone so residents who have no choice other than to regularly use Cornwall Council car parks can benefit from vastly reduced ‘multi use’ tickets bought through the Just Park app.

“There are those that argue that parking should be free. The Council still has to maintain car parks and income from car park charges supports the Council’s wider transport service so without that income, we’d need to find other ways to generate that money.

"There is also the consideration that having unlimited free car parks is not always good for high streets as commuters or people working nearby may park there all day, meaning there is no turnover of spaces and shoppers who are determined to travel by car can’t find a space.

“We appreciate that it’s a balancing act and we’re not going to please everyone.”

The consultation, runs until Thursday, March 23.