The Royal Borough-owned car park in London Road, opposite the junction with Chobham Road, currently has no time restrictions, meaning opportunist commuters use it to leave their cars in all day while they travel into London.
Traders claim they have also been hit over the past two years by the installation of traffic-calming measures and container plants, which meant valuable parking spaces in Chobham Road were removed.
However, from Tuesday, July 1, new restrictions will be imposed on the London Road car park to entice both residents and visitors to shop in the area.
A section of 40 spaces will be allocated for shoppers to use and while the car park will remain free, a display ticket system will be in operation, allowing shoppers three hours per ticket.
Nigel Lewis, owner of Lewis
of Sunningdale butchers, in Chobham Road, said: “This is something I have campaigned for for a couple of years now.
“I think it is great news for both local people and local businesses. Businesses have struggled in the past to make ends meet with the parking situation because there just aren’t enough spaces.
“As humans we’re lazy. If there isn’t anywhere to park we are just going to drive somewhere else to shop. I think these new restrictions will change that and I’m sure Sunningdale will become a much better place to live and shop.”
In addition, each of the 38 recognised businesses in Suningdale will be allocated two spaces each for staff members to use.
If the 40 spaces are well-used by shoppers, the council could look to increase that number to encourage even more people to shop there.
Darren Walter, director of Waterfords estate agents, said: “Despite only being a small area, the parade of shops in London Road near Sunningdale train station and nearby Chobham Road are always busy. This is inevitable since the station has limited off-road parking and yet offers a mainline link to London.
“While we think it is important to support local commuters, and hope in time more parking might be made available for this purpose, we are pleased that the new system will enable this particular car park to better service local businesses and shoppers.
“Putting a time limit on the car park will help ensure there is adequate parking for those wishing to visit Sunningdale for other purposes.”
Royal Borough councillor Christine Bateson, of Sunningdale ward, said: “I am very pleased that this proposed change to the car park is going to go ahead.
“It will mean that people will be able to shop a lot more easily and businesses in Sunningdale will benefit too. Both shoppers and traders will be able to provide a valuable service to the community.”