Two Dundee councillors have called for the local authority to consider free parking on Sunday afternoons in the run-up to Christmas.
Liberal Democrat councillors Fraser Macpherson and Craig Duncan said the council is “missing a trick” by not offering free parking in all its car parks in the city centre and Broughty Ferry as Christmas approaches.
They claim it would “boost the attractiveness of the city” to the wider region.
Mr Macpherson, who represents the West End, has contacted the council’s director of City Development about the idea.
He said: “I have raised this before and the council has taken a bit of a head in the sand approach in the past. It really needs to be a bit more imaginative in its approach.
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“The council is seriously missing a trick here. Edinburgh is already offering free parking on a Sunday.
“It appears our council doesn’t get it — we have to compete with other Scottish cities. Perth also has free parking concessions in the run up to Christmas.”
Ferry councillor Craig Duncan said: “The main Broughty Ferry Queen Street car park has been subject to great disruption this year, with much of the car park being impacted upon. Firstly due to rail platform works and now by the installation of electric vehicle charging facilities.
“It would be a decent gesture to offer some free parking in exchange, to help Broughty Ferry businesses and local residents in the run-up to Christmas.
“Broughty Ferry and Dundee are already attractive places for out-of-town shoppers and some limited free parking would further help.
“Additionally, the council should be doing more to help promote the great small businesses in district shopping centres like Broughty Ferry, the West End and Lochee.”
Councillor Lynne Short, convener of City Development, noted this would be a policy decision and had not been approached by the Liberal Democrats members. She did note free parking was supplied for the recent West End light switch on.
Ms Short encouraged shoppers to consider public transport.
“On Saturday I was in town and took the bus and spent more than five hours shopping as part of small business Saturday and had catch up over lunch with friends.
“I knew I could have a relaxing time as I did not have to consider parking fees and I also had a wee glass of wine with no hesitation.
“More people are using the high street for experience shopping which you cannot do online so using a car is not always the main motivator”.
Meanwhile, the convener is calling on businesses to unite for a single day of “European-style” late openings amid claims the city centre is “decaying”.
She plans to contact local cafes and other establishments to discuss the prospect of adopting hours more similar to continental countries such as Spain and Italy.
Ms Short said: “I want to ask the people of Dundee to work with me on this experiment.”
Her suggestion comes after City Centre and Harbour Community Council chairman Bill Newcombe said the area is in a state of “decay” as attention shifts to the waterfront.