City councillors have voted 10 to six not to extend a first-hour-free parking scheme, which has been in place at the Lichfield St and Art Gallery parking buildings since June.
The scheme will end on August 31.
It had cost ratepayers $195,000 and only brought 395 more cars into the central city compared to the same time period last year.
In spite of those figures, city councillor James Gough argued for the scheme to be extended.
At Thursday's Christchurch City Council meeting, Gough said the success of the free parking scheme should not be measured in numbers.
Making it easier and more affordable for people to come to the city was "just the right signal to send", he said.
Gough said Covid-19 restrictions would have had an impact on the number of people taking advantage of the free parking. The council staff recommendation to end the free parking scheme lacked consideration of the current alert level restrictions, he said.
Free parking was "right thing to do" to support he city's hospitality and retail sectors, Gough said.