Wireless sensors fitted into the road surface can provide information on whether a car park is occupied. This information can be used to tell drivers (either through signs or online apps) where car parks are available, as well as the applicable price.
The sensors can be incorporated with online payment systems, making it easy for drivers to both find and pay for their parking, and ensuring they only pay for the time they use.
"Dynamic pricing" – in which the price falls as more parks become available – can also be introduced alongside the sensors. Where this system has been used overseas, it has resulted in reduced average parking prices and greater parking availability.
Of course, sensors can also help with parking enforcement, by ensuring that drivers comply with time limits, and don’t park without paying or park in areas they are permitted to (such as disability parks or loading zones).
The Council is proposing to including funding in its Long-term Plan for installation of parking sensors in the central city. A final decision on implementation will be made after the results of the trial are known.
Implementation will require some changes to our policies, including the introduction of flexible pricing.
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