Parking charges look set to be on their way for skiers, visitors, and walkers and climbers at the main car park on Cairn Gorm.
CairnGorm Mountain, which runs the ski centre and funicular railway, is planning to install 6 stone boxes to collect car parking fees for the Coire Cas car park. The charges will be voluntary in the first instance with the aim being to introduce compulsory charging if the scheme is successful.
CairnGorm Mountain says it will use the money to help pay for improved visitor information and footpath repairs. It is understood that car park donations will not be used to subsidise the loss-making funicular railway.
Cairngorms National Park planning officer Robert Grant said: “Introduction of voluntary donations scheme does not in itself require planning permission and is not a material planning consideration. However, the principle of voluntary charging schemes is generally well established nationally and is becoming increasingly common within the Cairngorms National Park at a number of car parks in popular recreational destinations.”
“While these voluntary donations may be considered controversial by some users, it is recognised that the monies collected help to care or resources and facilities.”
The National Park has recommended that information be collected on visitor attitudes, compliance rates, and impacts on parking to inform any future decision on compulsory charging.