Free Parking Bill Is Filed in Congress, Covers Malls, Hospitals and Schools

Mall Parking
PHOTO BY MDV Edwards /

( A measure has been filed in the House of Representatives seeking to require commercial and public establishments such as malls, supermarkets, schools, hospitals, and hotels to provide free parking areas to their clients.

South Cotabato 2nd District Rep. Peter Miguel, the author of the measure, said the provision of free parking areas is "a public service and a matter of courtesy" to customers of business and public establishments.

"The government must strive to put up adequate mechanisms that will ensure that consumers are protected while at the same time encouraging more trade to the end that a good environment for businesses is set in place," Miguel said in the explanatory note of his bill.

"The provision of parking areas significantly improves the desirability of the area in as much as the profitability of surrounding businesses because consumers will always prefer to go to malls safely," he added.

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Who are covered by the free parking?

If the measure is enacted into law, those who can avail of the free parking are the legitimate patrons of the business and public establishments.

This means only customers who have made actual purchases or availed of the establishment's products and services are entitled to free parking.

How to avail of the free parking?

Legitimate patrons can avail of the free parking provided that they reach an aggregate minimum purchase of P500 with receipts from the establishment and have used the parking area for less than two hours, according to the measure.

Tax benefits will be provided to owners of malls and other establishments to balance the cost of providing free parking spaces and the loss of income from the collection of parking fees.

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Earlier, the "No Garage, No Car" bill, a measure that seeks to require prospective car buyers to have their own parking space first before purchasing and registering their vehicle, was also filed at the House of Representatives to help reduce congestion along roadsides and sidewalks.

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