A LACK of parking in the Ballarat CBD will be the subject of a new City Council investigation.In October the City of Ballarat commissioned consulting firm AECOM to produce the CBD Parking Issues Paper, which provided council with an overview of the current parking arrangements, existing conditions and issues. There are 3500 on-street parking spaces in the study area, and research has shown many drivers will do laps of a block hoping to get a park in their ideal location rather than trying elsewhere. Motorists are also staying longer than the nominated duration of time limits. Another area of concern is the number of loading zones located in Ballarat, with 17 in a 275-metre stretch in Curtis Street."Everyone of us knows it, we're short on parking," Councillor John Philips said."We need to open up the city, rather than close it down. It's about getting the right mix."Cr Judy Verlin said she hoped people would become more aware of free parking offered within the CBD, such as a car park located on the roof of Safeway in Eastwood Street."The community needs to understand how important it is to get the parking strategy right, and how much this is going to cost us," she said.The report put to council at their ordinary meeting last week recommended parking fees not be increased to subsidise additional investment in off-street parking provisions.The information will support the development of the draft parking strategy, which will commence in the new year.