Council car parking strategies will increasingly be led by emissions-based policies while many authorities are also looking at dynamic pricing based on availability.
The data, taken from a survey by cashless parking provider RingGo, has revealed that 78% of councils say air quality is driving parking policy – areas that RingGo has developed dynamic pricing solutions for in the form its Emissions Based and Net Zero Parking services.
But the research, carried out during July and August 2020 with parking managers from local authorities, also shows the impact of Covid-19 on the sector. A total of 57% of UK councils provided free parking during first months of the pandemic and the need to react quickly during the crisis has accelerated demand from local councils to be able to provide dynamic pricing based on availability; 41% of survey respondents are looking into this and half would like to base this on vehicle type as well.
Additionally, 56% are looking to make more data-driven decisions, specifically to track sessions and income (95%) and the migration from machine to cashless payments (86%). The research also said that 72% expect to see phone-based parking payments take priority; again the result of the impact of Covid-19.
RingGo UK managing director Peter O’Driscoll said: “RingGo has been in the parking business for a long time, so we understand how different, and difficult, 2020 has been for many of our customers and partners. However, it is great to see that they are taking it in their stride, learning from many of the decisions they were forced to make during the pandemic and turning these into opportunities. From embracing touch-free parking to using data and becoming more environmentally conscious, these transitions would all have taken longer under any other circumstances.”