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September 2020 | #341
SMART THINKER The University of Leeds’ Majid Khan welcomes us to his campus PA R K I N G • T R A F F I C • K E R B S I D E
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WELCOME SEPTEMBER 2020 | #341
The fundamental principal should be that pavements are not car parks
A step in the right direction
et’s be clear about one thing: pavements are places where people walk. Parking cars, vans or lorries on the footway is not acceptable; it is rude, anti-social and dangerous. Vehicles
parked on the footway are more than a mere inconvenience, they present a clear safety risk to all pedestrians, who find themselves forced to move into the road. Most worryingly, vehicles left on pavements present a particular hazard to children, parents with buggies, the elderly, wheelchair users, the partially sighted and the blind. Pavement parking obscures sight lines for people crossing the road and blocks the vision of drivers at junctions. And as footways are not designed to carry the weight of several tonnes of steel, so they become damaged. Cracked paving slabs and rutted paths are not just unsightly, they then become trip hazards. Pavement parking also has a psychological cost. Research by the charity Guide Dogs reveals that 32% of people with vision impairments and 48% of wheelchair users are less willing to go out on their own because of pavement parking, which decreases independence and contributes towards isolation. The problem of pavement parking has been highlighted in a long-running campaign run by Guide Dogs and Living Streets, who have done a brilliant job at mobilising MPs in Parliament and gaining support from a wide range of organisations, including the Local Government Association, Mumsnet and the British Parking Association. It is good news that the Department for Transport has finally launched a consultation on the introduction of a consistent approach to parking on the footway. Parking on footways is banned in London, but elsewhere in the country it is only prohibited for lorries, with local authorities left to introduce prohibitions on a street-by-street basis. The department has proposed a variety of solutions, ranging from: improving the Traffic Regulation Order process to make it easier for councils to prohibit pavement parking in their areas; giving councils powers to fine drivers who park on paths; or a London-style nationwide ban on pavement parking. There will be people and companies who will argue the case for retaining pavement parking as an option, citing narrow streets and a lack of offstreet alternatives as a justification for using the footway. But a street’s parking and delivery needs should be resolved on a site-specific basis. The fundamental principal should be that pavements are not car parks. Mark Moran Editor
Parking Review online: www.parkingreview.co.uk COVER IMAGE: MAJID KHAN, SUPPORT SERVICES MANAGER AT THE UNIVERSITY OF LEEDS AND CHAIR OF THE INTERNATIONAL PARKING COMMUNITY’S HIGHER EDUCATION GROUP
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Back to school The Department for Transport is promoting walking and cycling as being the best ways to get to and from school
Rejections and refunds Newcastle City Council disagrees with Traffic Penalty Tribunal review, but will refund penalty charge notices
The new Appeals Charter The government launches consultation on a new code of practice and framework for private parking sector
A fresh approach to clean air Marston’s Nick Ruxton-Boyle says councils should act to build on the environmental benefits that came with lockdown
The great holiday experiment Staycations have exposed the need for coherent strategies to manage leisure traffic, writes Alasdair Kirkbride
Meet the traffic calmers Low Traffic Neighbourhood schemes can turn urban streets into people-friendly places, says Waltham Forest’s Clyde Loakes
38 43 46 Editorial Managing editor: Mark Moran Tel: 020 7091 7871 email@example.com Deputy editor: Deniz Huseyin Tel: 020 7091 7872 firstname.lastname@example.org Editorial director: Peter Stonham
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The learning curve Collaboration is the key when it comes to managing campus parking, writes University of Leeds’ Majid Khan
The view from the driving seat The global pandemic will have a profound effect on the future role and design of car parks, says Steve Dunn of Berry Systems
Making space for housing Government owned car parks could hold the key to providing 110,000 new homes, writes Oliver Knight of Knight Frank
Subscriptions Christina Pierre Tel: 020 7091 7959 firstname.lastname@example.org Accounts Irina Cocks Tel: 020 7091 7854 email@example.com Business manager Rod Fletcher Tel: 0191 280 1410
Parking Review was launched in 1989 and is published twelve times a year. It is the only independent magazine dedicated to the UK parking sector.
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RICHARD BOURCHIER VIA TWITTER
This planter, installed as part of a Low Traffic Neighbourhood in Ealing, west London, was attacked less than 24 hours after being installed
Beating the backlash
he reassessment of how urban roadspace is allocated and used has been one of the few positive side effects of the pandemic. Across the UK, the need to alleviate pressure on public transport in the light of social distancing has seen an increase in the number of people walking and cycling to work, shops, schools, for exercise and for leisure. Local authorities have thus banned cars from high streets, widened pavements with barriers and created temporary, or ‘pop-up’, bike lanes. During lockdown, temporary roadspace reallocation schemes were delivered using COVID-19 emergency active travel funding awarded by the Department for Transport (DfT) and the devolved administrations. Initially, reallocation schemes were created using traffic cones and A-boards, but many are now being firmed-up with heavy-duty lane separators, traffic wands and planters. There is a desire to lock-in benefits such as cleaner air and slower traffic in streetscenes no longer dominated by the car. This is leading to the creation of Low Traffic Neighbourhoods (LTNs), groups of residential streets where through-traffic is discouraged or removed. There has also been a growth in School Streets, which make roads safer for children who walk and cycle by restricting vehicle access at the start and end of the day. However, criticism and opposition to roadspace reallocation is hardening in some quarters, with concerns being raised about access issues, the displacement of traffic and increased congestion on roads surrounding reallocation schemes. The Road Haulage Association is worried that reducing road space and access to the kerb will increase congestion and delay deliveries. Meanwhile, the College of Paramedics, has warned that badly designed road layouts and closures could put lives at risk by increasing 999 emergency response times. There has been a backlash against reallocation schemes in many parts of the UK. For example, Aberdeenshire Council experienced opposition to the removal of town centre parking under a scheme supported by the Scottish Government’s Spaces for People
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fund. In the London Borough of Islington, demonstrators marched on the town hall to protest at the council’s road closure proposals. East Sussex County Council has shelved a number of measures that were to be funded using its share of the DfT’s Emergency Active Travel Fund. In neighbouring Brighton & Hove, councillors have received petitions with thousands of signatures both for and against a road closure along the seafront and temporary cycle lanes on a dual carriageway. Petitions and debates can help improve schemes that have, by necessity, been introduced at often breakneck speed. Local authorities have been amending, revising and even removing street arrangements where needed to ensure access for deliveries, utilities and emergency services. What is not acceptable, however, is violence and criminal damage. For example, temporary active travel measures in Poole, Dorset, were damaged and planters in Ealing, west London, vandalised. It was thus heartening to see residents of one south London street work together to restore planters displaced by vandals. Over the coming months, let’s hope calm and open dialogue between local authorities, residents and stakeholders will result in the creation of a streetscene that works for all. GLYNN GOODWIN VIA TWITTER
Roadspace reallocation schemes spark tensions that need to be calmed, writes Mark Moran
Wandsworth residents move a safe routes planter back into position after it was moved by vandals
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Green parking spaces for electric vehicles Department for Transport plans to encourage EV use and make charging more convenient Parking spaces for electric vehicles (EVs) could be painted green as part of the UK government’s programme of support for cleaner and greener vehicles. Transport secretary Grant Shapps announced the idea during the first ever World EV Day, which took place on 9 September. Shapps said the government will be stepping up its support for improving air quality, driving down emissions and encouraging drivers to make the switch to electric vehicles through considering recommendations in a government-commissioned report by the Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV). Ideas being considered include: EV chargepoints being installed at popular destinations such as supermarkets and tourist sites; consistent and clear public signage for drivers on UK roads; and providing guidance to local authorities on painting EV parking spaces green. The transport secretary said: “Whether you’re taking a trip with the family or commuting to work, with the wide range of models at competitive prices, it is now more cost-effective and convenient than ever to
GTR managing director Tom Moran shows transport secretary Grant Shapps a new EV charging hub at Hatfield Station drive and charge an electric vehicle. This, together with our continued support for R&D, will see talented UK-based SMEs flourish, as well as more than 6,000 skilled jobs created up and down the country.” Further steps to decarbonise road transport taken by the government include £12m in funding for research and development (R&D) investment to support a series of competitions for some of the most promising EV technologies. Together with Innovate UK, a
non-departmental public research body, the funding will support a range projects designed to open up commercial opportunities, one of which could see cars of the future benefit from a 6-minute battery charge. Meanwhile, Highways England is backing a green incentive scheme that allows businesses to try electric vehicles for free before they buy. The £9.3m scheme is being financed from Highways England’s Designated Funds programme.
Advice for EV buyers
New EV hub for Hatfield rail station
The Department for Transport (DfT) is working with Autotrader, a website for buying and selling cars, to develop a dedicated electric vehicle (EV) section to help potential EV purchasers with their decision, with more sites expected to follow. Ian Plummer, director at Autotrader, said: “Range anxiety, charging infrastructure and costs remain the primary barriers to adoption of electric vehicles. Therefore, in a bid to help consumers and alleviate some of their concerns, we relaunched our electric vehicle hub with new editorial content and improved search functionality.” The hub features specialist content and car reviews to educate consumers about what they need to know about zero-emission cars, as well as helping to alleviate concerns they might have. Improved search filters on Autotrader now present things like battery range and charging time, while key information such as battery range is more prominently displayed in vehicle adverts on the online marketplace.
A railway station electric vehicle charging hub has been opened at Hatfield in Hertfordshire. The facility, which features 27 charging points, was the result of train company Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) working with chargepoint provider Pod Point. Hatfield was chosen following a heatmapping exercise to find EV ownership and sales hotspots. The hub was opened on World EV Day by transport secretary Grant Shapps, who is MP for Welwyn Hatfield. “We’re taking great strides toward our goal of having one of the best electric vehicle infrastructure networks in the world,” said Shapps. “This means a network for current and future electric vehicle drivers that is affordable, reliable, accessible and secure. Today’s landmark announcement ticks all those boxes and will make journeys on road and rail much greener.” The charging points will provide additional accessibility and convenience for customers using the Great Northern and Thameslink station and, as part of the project, 12 new charging points have also been installed at Haywards Heath Station. The new charging points are in addition to the existing 114 units in place across the GTR network, which have all undergone improvements as part of the project. Tom Moran, managing director for Thameslink and Great Northern, said: “We’re delighted to officially unveil our new EV charging hub at Hatfield Station. This is part of a much wider programme of
The Autotrader EV hub
Tom Moran and Grant Shapps works to improve station facilities at every station across the GTR network and give a better experience to our passengers. We have over 1,000 improvement projects happening across our network and many will help improve the sustainability of our stations, especially as our local communities seek out options for the greenest forms of travel.” Chargepoint supplier Pod Point sees the GTR project as setting a standard for future rail sector charging hubs. Erik Fairbairn, founder and chief executive, said: “Our continued partnership with GTR is making it easier for drivers to choose electric and will help accelerate adoption. We see the GTR EV charging hubs at Hatfield and Haywards Heath as a blueprint for EV charging across the rail industry. It offers connected electrified transport for all UK commuters and, for the millions of drivers without off-street parking, it provides a viable and convenient alternative to domestic or workplace charging.”
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Call to end newspaper advertising of TROs PA Consulting advises DfT on future of Traffic Regulation Orders Highway authorities in England should no longer have to advertise Traffic Regulation Orders (TROs) in newspapers, say consultants in a report for the Department for Transport (DfT). PA Consulting says councils should be able to choose how best to communicate TROs to people and that removing the newspaper advertising requirement will save authorities both time and money. The requirement for newspaper advertising was introduced in 1984. Highway authorities today spend an estimated £49m a year on advertising through newspapers. The government consulted on removing the need for newspaper advertising of TROs in 2011-12, but backed down because of concern it would damage the economics of local newspapers. PA Consulting was appointed
by the DfT to conduct a wideranging review of the legislative process for permanent, temporary and experimental TROs. Its final report recommends that highway authorities should make TRO data more accessible in standard formats. “If open TRO data was mandated, thirdparty data users supported the assumption that the market would provide solutions to meet relevant user needs,” it said. The consultant says there are no legislative barriers prevent-
ing the publishing of open TRO data. “However, due to the pressure of meeting other legislative requirements, making TRO data open would not be a priority for highway authorities without a mandate,” say the consultants. Currently there is “an inconsistent approach across highway authorities to the way [TRO] data is structured, stored and published”. PA Consulting said: “Some authorities still operate paper-
Street closures fast-tracked with experimental TROs School Streets and Low Traffic Neighbourhoods spread across London A number of London boroughs have announced plans to close residential streets to through traffic using Experimental Traffic Regulation Orders (ETROs) that do not require prior consultation. The east London boroughs of Newham and Waltham Forest are collaborating on a ‘Low Traffic Neighbourhood’ (LTN) programme of closures in the Forest Gate, Maryland, and South Leytonstone areas. The councils say that this is the first example of boroughs collaborating on such a scheme. Physical barriers of large planters (‘modal filters’) will be used to restrict vehicular access on some streets. On others, automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) enforcement cameras will be installed. Newham was asked what influenced its choice of physical barriers or cameras at a particular locations. “The locations with camera
enforcement have been requested to be kept ‘open’ by the emergency services (namely the police) for reasons of response time to incidents,” said a spokeswoman. The ANPR restrictions will apply 24 hours a day, seven days a week and to all vehicles except the emergency services. Implementation of the restrictions began this month using ETROs. “While in normal circumstances the councils would hold a consultation before introducing a scheme like this, the COVID-19 crisis means action is needed quickly to keep roads safe,” they say. Residents are being encouraged to provide feedback in an online survey over the next six months. ETROs can last for 18 months. Objections to the Order being made permanent must be made in the first six. Meanwhile, another east London borough, Hackney, is implementing an extensive programme of ‘School Street’ traffic restrictions and residential road closures using ETROs. Forty new School Streets are planned, restricting vehicular access at the start
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and end of the school day, More than 20 traffic filters will close junctions to vehicular traffic, while still allowing pedestrians and cyclists to pass through. The closures make use of wooden planters as well as ANPR cameras. Hackney said: “Over 40% of traffic in the borough is through traffic with little or no economic benefit to the borough. These plans are aimed at reclaiming Hackney’s roads from this traffic, helping people to walk, cycle and shop locally.” Mayor of the Hackney, Philip Glanville, said 70% of households do not own a car. Demonstrations have taken place against road closures in the London Borough of Islington. The south-east London borough of Lewisham has used Temporary Traffic Regulation Orders (TTROs) to close some roads. Some of its closures have upset the neighbouring Royal Borough of Greenwich. Modal filters and the use of ETROs and TTROs are explicitly endorsed by the DfT’s network management guidance, published in May in response to COVID-19.
based systems. Current requirements for publishing TROs, such as making orders available for public inspection in council offices, do not meet modern expectations for data standardisation and accessibility.” PA Consulting said the process for approving temporary Traffic Regulation Order applications, from organisations such as utility companies, needs speeding up. Highway authorities can take between 6-12 weeks to process an application, it reported. “Applicants cite this lead time as a reason why services to end users are delayed.” Some participants thought the process could be reduced to three to four weeks by adopting recommendations in the report such as introducing digital signatures and removing the need for newspaper advertising. The DfT is also recommended to develop new legislation for streetworks and special event temporary TROs to remove “burdensome steps and requirements”.
Brexit lorry parks planned Communities secretary Robert Jenrick has given himself powers to build truck parks across England to avoid chaotic queues at ports when the United Kingdom finally leaves the European Union. A statutory instrument laid before Parliament last month enables the government to start construction in 29 different council areas without the approval of local officials. The instrument is called the Town and Country Planning (Border Facilities and Infrastructure) (EU Exit) (England) Special Development Order 2020. The government has already started constructing holding facilities for lorries in Kent that will be used to park goods vehicles that have the correct paperwork to enter the EU. The holding pens are a key part of Britain’s plans to avoid border delays from 1 January, when full customs controls will be imposed on goods travelling from the UK, whether or not it reaches a trade deal with the bloc.
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£2m fund for local action on air quality Local authorities can apply for finds to tackle vehicle emissions Local authorities across England can bid for a portion of at least £2m for a range of projects to improve air quality by reducing levels of fine particulate matter (PM2.5) and levels of nitrogen dioxide from vehicles. The grant application process is competitive, with projects to tackle PM2.5 particularly welcomed by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra). The best projects will be those that seek to develop long-term solutions to increase awareness and encourage behaviour change. Since it was established, the Air Quality Grant scheme has awarded around £64.5m to projects that benefit schools, businesses and communities. Environment minister Rebecca Pow said: “Air pollution,
Vehicle emissions blight many town centres and in particular PM2.5, carries enormous risks to human health which is why we are continuing to provide funding to local authorities to help them take action. This is part of delivering on the ambition in our worldleading Clean Air Strategy to halve the harm to human health from air pollution by 2030. “We know that local authorities are in the best position to address the issues they face in their areas and we look forward
to receiving ideas for ways to reduce emissions and promote cleaner, greener alternatives.” Transport minister Rachel Maclean said: “From schools, to local businesses and households, it’s vital that we support a diverse range of projects to create cleaner, greener places to live.” Applicants in previous years have been awarded funding to test indoor air quality and the effectiveness of filter systems in
schools, develop clean air village projects joining up several London boroughs, and raise awareness around domestic burning and the dangers of using harmful fuels such as coal and wet wood. Applications for the grant open from 2 September and close at midday on 14 October 2020. The fund will contribute towards meeting the objectives of Defra’s 2019 Clean Air Strategy, the most ambitious air quality strategy in a generation, which has been praised by the World Health Organization (WHO) as “an example for the rest of the world to follow”. It also complements the wider UK plan for tackling roadside nitrogen dioxide concentrations, which includes a £3.5bn investment into air quality and cleaner transport. The plan is supporting the uptake of low emissions vehicles, getting more people to cycle and walk, and encouraging cleaner public transport.
Means-test for Bath CAZ exemption
Proposed CAZ charges revised
Bath & North East Somerset Council (B&NES) plans to give some vehicle owners a twoyear exemption from the Bath Clean Air Zone (CAZ) restrictions because of the economic impact of COVID-19. The Class C CAZ will cover central Bath. Non-compliant buses, coaches and lorries will pay £100 a day and light goods vehicles, taxis and private hire vehicles £9 a day. A go-live date for the zone has still to be agreed by the council and the government because of COVID-19. B&NES is under a government direction to achieve compliance with the EU annual mean legal limit for nitrogen dioxide by the end of 2021. A £9.4m governmentfunded financial assistance scheme will help organisations and individuals who own noncompliant vehicles to upgrade to compliant vehicles. The council has been in talks with trade bodies to understand how their members have been affected by COVID-19 and how the CAZ could be amended to minimise the adverse economic impact, while still achieving the necessary improvement to air quality. In a report presented to
Local authorities in Greater Manchester have revised the proposed Clean Air Zone (CAZ) charges for non-compliant vehicles. The Class C zone will cover lorries, buses, coaches, light goods vehicles, taxis and private hire vehicles. Its implementation is scheduled for spring 2022. Light goods vehicles – vans – and minibuses will be exempted until 2023, giving time for the market in compliant vehicle models to develop. The proposed daily charge for non-compliant HGVs and buses is to be cut from £100 a day to £60. But charge for light goods vehicles and minibuses is being increased from £7.50 to £10. The daily
councillors last month, officers said: “As a result of this ongoing engagement, the financial assistance scheme has been amended to allow those eligible for the scheme but failing the affordability [credit] checks, to both obtain a temporary exemption [of up to two years] from charges and retain the ability to reapply at a later date when their finances may have improved.” The exemption will apply to Euro 4 and 5 vehicles but not to older vehicles. A two-year exemption will also apply to: • particular vehicle types such as community transport, blue badge holders, and recovery vehicles • people accepted onto the financial assistance scheme who are waiting for a vehicle to be manufactured and delivered. The financial assistance scheme will be targeted at organisations in the council area or adjoining council areas who undertake an average of two or more trips into the CAZ per week over a two-month period. Installation of the CAZ infrastructure should be completed in September.
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charge for taxis and private hire vehicles remains £7.50. The changes follow a review of data and modelling. A £7.50 charge for vans is predicted to prompt the upgrade of just 48% of vehicles, whereas a charge of £10 raises this to about 70%. “At a lower charge level, the risk is that the scheme imposes costs through charges without delivering the necessary benefits of emissions reductions,” said Andrew Western, the portfolio lead for the green city-region and the leader of Trafford Council told colleagues last month. A £60 charge for HGVs is expected to deliver “very similar upgrade responses and benefits as a charge of £100”.
£38m bill for Manchester’s CAZ road signs Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) is to spend £38.3m on over 2,000 road signs to alert people to the conurbation’s proposed Clean Air Zone (CAZ). A TfGM spokesman said: “The agreement is for a five-year period and covers the full life cycle of the signage, including the implementation, operation and decommissioning at TfGM’s option of approximately 2,350 signs across Greater Manchester to inform the public of the presence and boundaries of the clean air zone scheme.” Transport for Greater Manchester is likely to be the CAZ operating body, and it will retain ownership of the signs throughout the life cycle.
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Pavement parking consultation launched Case for keeping footways clear set in context of pandemic Parking on pavements could be banned across England under government plans to ease journeys for disabled people and parents pushing prams. Parking on footways is banned in London, but elsewhere in the country it is only prohibited for lorries, with local authorities left to introduce prohibitions on a street-by-street basis. To cause an unnecessary obstruction on the highway – which includes the footway – is currently an offence which is only enforceable by the police. The Department for Transport (DfT) said it wants to make pavements safer for people with disabilities and families by banning anti-social parking. The department said parking on pavements disproportionately affects people with visual or mobility impairments, those assisted by guide dogs, and wheelchair and mobility scooter users. Disabled people say that pavement parking is a significant barrier to carrying out daily journeys. A review of the issue conducted by the DfT indicates that more than 95% of wheelchair users and people with visual impairments have faced prob-
Cars parked on pavements cause an obstruction lems as a result of vehicles parked on pavements. Recent research from the charity Guide Dogs shows that 32% of people with vision impairments and 48% of wheelchair users were less willing to go out on their own because of pavement parking, decreasing independence and contributing towards isolation. Three options are proposed in the consultation: 1. Improving the Traffic Regulation Order process to make it easier for councils to prohibit pavement parking in their areas 2. Giving councils powers to fine drivers who park on paths 3. A London-style nationwide ban on pavement parking. However, the department says there is still a major role for cars and other private vehicles,
so any future plans will need to take this into consideration. As many streets were built decades and centuries before the high levels of vehicles currently on roads, the DfT said any measures will need to ensure the free-flow of traffic and access for the emergency services. The issue of pavement parking has been highlighted in a longrunning campaign run by the charities Guide Dogs and Living Streets. The charities have attracted support from MPs, who have launched Private Member’s Bills on the issue, and have been supported by a wide range of organisations, including Mumsnet and the British Parking Association. While a consultation on pavement parking has been expected for some time, the emphasis on
Calls for reform and notes of caution The consultation on pavement parking has been welcomed by the charities that have been campaigning for reform. Stephen Edwards, director of policy and communications at Living Streets said: “We’re regularly contacted by disabled and older people who feel trapped in their homes because there isn’t enough room on the pavement for wheelchairs or mobility scooters. This has impacted more people during the pandemic with blocked pavements affecting everyone’s ability to physically distance.” Blanche Shackleton, head of policy, public affairs and campaigns at Guide Dogs said: “For many people with sight loss, cars and vans parked on the pavement make our streets stressful and dangerous to navigate. At any time, you might be forced out into the road with traffic that you cannot see. When every journey is an ordeal, simply going out independently can become daunting.” The Local Government Association (LGA) welcomed the news. Cllr David Renard, the LGA’s transport spokesman, said: “Pavement parking and damaged pavements is one of the biggest complaints from pedestrians – and not just in London. The LGA has long-called for the ban on
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pavement parking to be extended to all areas of England, with councils able to make exemptions, so we are pleased government has launched this consultation. Councils share the government’s aim to promote active travel and this measure should make walking more attractive and safer for everyone, including vulnerable users.” There was support for the proposals from the Mumsnet online forum. Justine Roberts, founder and chief executive of Mumsnet, said: “Lots of us have occasionally parked a couple of wheels up on the pavement to leave space on the road without really thinking about how it might inconvenience people. It’s a topic that comes up regularly on Mumsnet, where wheelchair users and people with buggies share stories about being forced into the road, or having to double back long distances.” Motoring organisation AA struck a more sceptical tone. Jack Cousens, head of roads policy for the AA, said: “A driver who deliberately parks in an obstructive manner and blocks the path of any pedestrian should expect to be punished. However, an outright ban on pavement parking could cause a series of unintended consequences. Road closures and narrowed roads, councils have acted with little
encouraging walking and cycling as means of aiding social distancing in urban areas seems to have been a factor in its launch on the August Bank Holiday. The consultation is being framed as the latest step in the government’s pledge to deliver on commitments to make transport equally accessible for all users by 2030, as set out in the Inclusive Transport Strategy. Transport secretary Grant Shapps has been stepping up efforts to encourage active travel – such as walking – as part of a green, post-COVID recovery, and level-up road quality across the country. The government announced £2bn in May to get more people walking and cycling, and £2.5bn in the Budget towards repairing potholes as part of a nationwide programme. Shapps said: “Parking on pavements means wheelchair users, visually impaired people and parents with pushchairs can be forced into the road, which is not only dangerous, but discourages people from making journeys. A key part of our green, post-COVID recovery will be encouraging more people to choose active travel, such as walking, so it is vital that we make the nation’s pavements accessible for everyone.” The consultation period will run until 22 November 2020.
consultation and in many cases lost the confidence of the communities they serve. “Local authorities should make a street-by-street assessment and where pavement parking is allowed, markings should show how much pavement can be used. While councils have always had the powers to tackle problem parking, it would be typical if the only time they act is when there is fines income to be had from it.” The logistics sector has advised a cautious approach. In her response to the consultation on pavement parking in England, Natalie Chapman, head of urban policy at Logistics UK, said: “Logistics UK’s members agree that pavements are for pedestrian use first and foremost – their safety and access must come first – and this is particularly important for vulnerable groups such as wheelchair and pushchair users and for the blind and partially sighted. But we must also ensure the government considers the needs of logistics in its decisionmaking to ensure that goods can keep moving efficiently and effectively through our towns and cities. For example, the government must ensure a pavement parking ban does not further narrow residential streets where cars currently park partially on the pavement, as it could prevent access for refuse collection vehicles, home deliveries and emergency services.”
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A step closer to better pavement parking laws? LIVING STREETS
The British Parking Association’s Kelvin Reynolds says reform of footway regulations is needed
bstruction of the pavement by parked cars causes unnecessary danger to pedestrians and especially children, young people, the elderly and disabled people. This is why the British Parking Association (BPA) welcomes the government’s consultation on improving pavement parking powers. We have regularly called for a clear and consistent UK-wide common approach to pavement parking which enables local authorities to manage and enforce parking on the pavement, with the presumption being that pavement parking is not allowed. A UK-wide BPA study found that the majority of people wanted anti-social parking to be dealt with as a priority. Pavement parking, congestion caused by school runs and parking too close to junctions together were cited by 56% as the ‘most urgent’ issues which need addressing. Everyone knows that few, if any, of our towns and cities were designed to accommodate today’s high levels of vehicle ownership. In many residential areas with narrow roads and no driveways the pavement seems the only convenient place to park for a motorist without obstructing the carriageway.
Cars parked in footway are an obstacle to vulnerable groups and parents of young children But pedestrians have needs too and it is unsafe for them to have to move into the road when a car is parked on the pavement. The new Highway Code puts pedestrians at the top of the road user hierarchy and they must have priority on pavements. Additionally, damage to the pavement and verges is also a financial burden for everyone, both in terms of highway maintenance and personal injury claims.
The consultation offers choices. Government must do all of this. We must reform and simplify the TRO process and decriminalise the enforcement of obstruction, as well as transforming the default position. It’s not OK to park on the pavement. Kelvin Reynolds is director of corporate and public affairs at the British Parking Association (BPA)
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NCP clocks up 300th People’s Parking award Accreditation scheme informs drivers of services at car parks People’s Parking has awarded NCP with its 300th customer-friendly car park accreditation. People’s Parking, founded by disability rights campaigner Helen Dolphin MBE in 2016, works to improve car parks for customers by celebrating those with facilities at a set standard for disabled people, parents, commuters, cyclists, motorcyclists, electric vehicles and those who drive wheelchair accessible vehicles or camper vans. For car parks to achieve the accreditation they need to demonstrate good signage and pedestrian routes, be well lit, clean and managed. The location of the car park is also noted to help people find parking near to where they want to go, as well as what payment options are available. “It is an amazing achievement to have so many car parks reaching our standards and shows considerable commitment and dedication by NCP to improving their car parks for motorists,” said Helen Dolphin MBE, director of People’s Parking, who is also a quadruple amputee and disability campaigner. “Many of their car parks had facilities for different customers that were not necessarily at our required standard, and it
Helen Dolphin MBE has taken a lot of hard work to get them People’s Parking ready. In some cases this has meant re-painting bays and installing new equipment. “As well as putting their car parks into my scheme I’ve also helped train NCP staff in disability equality, and I have no doubt that their customers will benefit from this increased awareness.” Jonathan Scott, chief executive of NCP
said “I am delighted NCP is leading the way on supporting this initiative and that through our collaboration with People’s Parking, we have over 300 car parks already accredited to the standards required. “We’re committed to improving the parking experience for our customers and will continue our efforts by adding more car parks in the coming weeks and months.” www.peoplesparking.org
Consultations on new private parking code BPA supports work to develop on single code of practice for private land A pair of public consultations have been launched on the Parking (Code of Practice) Act 2019, legislation which seeks to better regulate the private parking sector. The British Parking Association (BPA), which represents many private sector parking operators, has welcomed the consultations. Steve Clark, the BPA’s head of business operations said: “We welcome progress with the Act and will continue to work closely with government and others, including consumer groups to design a framework which provides a fair outcome for motorists, landowners and parking operators. “The Act supports our call for a standard setting body, a single code of practice, and a single independent appeals service, all of which are vital to ensure a common framework for effective parking management on private land.” The British Standards Institution (BSI) is consulting
on a Publicly Available Specification (PAS) for the private parking sector, which will in effect create a single code of practice as described in the Act. “The BPA has worked closely with government, the BSI and other stakeholders throughout the process to inform the development of the PAS,” Clark continued. In parallel, the Ministry for Housing, Communities & Local Government (MHCLG) is seeking views on how to improve regulation of the private parking sector for the benefit of consumers, parking operators and landowners. “We have listened to the minister and MPs concerns and share their desire to produce standards that enable effective parking management that is fair, proportionate and clear for all motorists. The matter of an appropriate level of parking charge has long been an area on concern. As part of the steering group helping to inform the new code, the BPA
has put forward a proposal for an Appeals Charter and threetier parking charge Levels designed to benefit motorists, operators and landowners alike,” said Clark. “The three-tiered charging approach includes an effective higher deterrent for the type of anti-social motorist actions that no stakeholders would condone, such as occupying Blue Badge bays; this is designed to protects the vulnerable, businesses, landowners, the high street, the economy and compliant motorists, as well as reducing the number of parking charges issued. The lower tier charges are designed to be a more proportionate deterrent for less serious breaches of parking terms and conditions. “This is supported by the Appeals Charter, which will remove many of the apparent injustices: for example a permit falling off a dashboard, forgetting to display a Blue Badge or a keying error.” Feature, page 24
Automated driving for motorways Automated driving could be permitted on Britain’s motorways as soon as next year. Last month the Department for Transport (DfT) issued a call for evidence on automatic lane keeping systems (ALKS) that allow drivers to pass the task of driving to the vehicle. An international regulation permitting the use of ALKS at up to 60kmh (37mph) was approved this summer. The DfT is interested in allowing ALKS at speeds of up to 70mph. A Transport Scotland spokesman welcomed the prospect of ALKS but reserved some caution: “We have noted the DfT’s new call for evidence on allowing ALKS on Britain’s motorways, including potentially at speeds of up to 70mph. The introduction of ALKS is consistent with the vision of Transport Scotland’s CAV Roadmap for Scotland, of how Scotland can be at the forefront of developments. “We are looking forward to seeing the evidence provided, particularly around the road safety impact of such a proposal.”
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Moving traffic enforcement generates £58m RAC
London and Welsh councils are issuing an increasing number of PCNs, suggests RAC research
he enforcement of moving traffic offences such as stopping in a yellow box junction, making an illegal turn or driving down a ‘no entry’ road generated £58.2m in penalties in 2018-19 for local authorities. This is £11.5m more than the £46.7m generated in 2016-17, according to data collected by the RAC. The RAC made a Freedom of Information (FoI) request to all local authorities that currently have the power to enforce moving traffic offences in England and Wales – the London boroughs, Transport for London (TfL) and Cardiff Council in Wales. Currently, local authorities outside of London and Cardiff only have powers to enforce bus lane contraventions. But on 27 July, the Department for Transport confirmed that it plans to extend these enforcement powers to all local authorities in England and Wales.
The national picture The percentage increase in the number of penalty charge notices (PCNs) issued was greater than the revenue increase. In 2016-17 councils issued 752,871 PCNs, rising to 1,007,405 in 2018-19 which equates to a 34% rise. Yellow box junctions are by far the most lucrative, bringing in revenue of £31.4m in 2018/19 compared to £22.3m for ‘no turn’ offences and £4.4m for ‘no entry’ contraventions. Looking at Cardiff alone, nearly four times as many PCNs were issued in 201819 compared to 2016-17 (74,142 compared to 19,080) translating to a £1.8m hike in revenue (£593,160 to £2.4m – 313%). The most profitable offences for Cardiff are ‘no turns’ yielding £1.4m in contrast to £826,424 for yellow box junctions and £182,782 for ‘no entry’ offences. Of the London boroughs which provided data to the RAC, a total of 933,263 PCNs were dished out in 2018/19, 27% more than two years ago (733,791). This, however, only translated to a 21% increase in revenues (£46.1m to £55.7m).
Yellow box junctions Of the authorities which benefitted the most from the enforcement of yellow box junctions, Transport for London topped the table with a revenue of nearly £10m (£9,969,545 – 135,923 PCNs) in 2018/19. In terms of single councils, Hammersmith & Fulham in west London topped the RAC table with a £3.5m yellow box revenue pot (from 53,576 PCNs) generated from 16 enforced junctions out
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The DfT has indicated moving traffic enforcement powers will be expanded to English councils outside London of 23 in its area – £1.1m. Next came the east London borough of Redbridge on £2.4m (34,782 PCNs from 14 enforced junctions out of a total of 35). Merton, in south-west London, was the only other council to generate more than £2m in yellow box penalties. It was third on £2.2m (31,081 PCNs were issued at 27 enforced junctions, but no overall total of junctions available). In terms of average revenues per enforced junction, the City of Westminster recorded the highest figure, with a single junction generating £333,295 from 4,595 penalty charge notices. Hammersmith & Fulham had the second largest average on £223,472 (£3.5m from 16 enforced junctions) and Richmond, also in west London, had the
second largest average revenue with £156,117. Transport for London has 399 yellow box junctions, but declined to disclose how many are enforced.
No turn offences Three authorities topped £2m in revenue from ‘no turn’ offences with Ealing in west London outdoing TfL with a revenue of £2.6m (from 44,612 PCNs) versus £2m (£2,093,651, from 28,978 PCNs). Hackney had the third highest total on £1,888,845.
No entry offences Harrow in north-west London was top for ‘no entry’ offences with a revenue of £549,785, followed by Southwark on £420,760 and Islington on £357,265.
‘Enforcement shouldn’t be a revenue generator’ The RAC’s Nicholas Lyes calls for clear signs and transparent reports It is plain for all to see that London boroughs, Transport for London and Cardiff Council are generating phenomenal sums of money from the enforcement of moving traffic offences. The vast majority of drivers we’ve surveyed agree that those who stop on yellow boxes, make illegal turns or go through ‘no entry’ signs need to be penalised, but when it comes to extending powers to other councils many are concerned, with 68% thinking local authorities will rush to install cameras to generate additional revenue. Four in 10 drivers (39%) also believe that road layouts and signage will be made deliberately confusing to increase the number of penalty charge notices (PCNs) issued. Clearly, the priority for enforcement should be to improve road safety and reduce congestion. The Department for Transport has decided to extend enforcement powers to other local authorities. However, we believe guidance should
be issued setting out where enforcement should be targeted and the types of signs that must be used to make drivers aware that enforcement cameras are operating, and for what type of moving traffic offence. It should also make clear the circumstances in which a PCN can be appealed and where mitigating circumstances may apply, such as stopping in a yellow box to allow an emergency services vehicle to go by. We welcome proposals that first offenders are sent a warning letter before subsequent penalties apply. This is particularly important where changes are made to urban road layouts. What we do not want is this being seen by cash-strapped local authorities as a way to generate revenue. In addition, we would urge local authorities to publish annual reports of moving traffic offence receipts by type and by junction. We would also encourage them to monitor hot spots where an unusually high proportion of PCNs are issued as this is more than likely a clear indication of a problem with signage or road layout. Nicholas Lyes is RAC head of roads policy
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BACK TO SCHOOL
Children should walk and cycle to school where this can be done safely
Steps to transform the school run The Department for Transport is promoting walking and cycling for the school run, but recognises that cars will be part of the mix
chools and colleges should encourage parents, staff and pupils to walk or cycle to school where it is safe and appropriate to do so. That is a key message from the Department for Transport (DfT) in its guidance on how to help schools and colleges reopen for the majority of pupils after months of lockdown. The application of social distancing measures to public transport has caused a significant reduction in effective capacity, which provides a challenge in routinely transporting children and students to schools and colleges. Nearly half of all journeys made in the morning peak hour are made for education purposes, and with public transport capacity severely constrained, alternative travel options are required. However, local authorities are also asked to recognise that many parents will have to rely on their cars as the best means of ensuring their children get to school. The Department for Transport first wrote to local authorities in England at the beginning of July, setting out the role of local authorities in planning for transport when schools and colleges return. The DfT updated the guidance on 11 August, ahead of the reopening of English schools in September. The revised guidance states: “Capacity on public transport remains limited given the requirements for social distancing; this will be particularly challenging for children and young people who travel to school or college by bus. Local authorities therefore need to put in place local demand management solutions for public services, and supplement the public bus network, and existing home to school transport, with additional capacity, to ensure that children can travel to school safely, and disruption for all passengers on the public network is minimised.” Transport planning solutions to enable the wider return of
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school and college students must be locally led, says the DfT. “The precise pressures on the local transport network for both home to school transport, and public transport, will vary greatly by area, and solutions will need to reflect local circumstances that apply,” it says.
Data-based decisions The Department for Transport’s revised guidance stresses the importance of local authorities making data-based decisions. “Unless high quality data already exists, local authorities should be working with schools and colleges to survey parents, carers and students to collect information about travel,” the department says. “This could include data on how students in their areas travelled to school or college before coronavirus (COVID-19); whether they intend to change their mode of travel; and, if not, what measures could persuade them to do so.” Local authorities are asked to work with local transport operators to assess overall level of current and forecast demand compared to expected capacity, particularly on routes used by children and young people. “Local authorities can then make an assessment as to how these routes can be supported using demand management and capacity interventions, taking into account the needs of all passengers,” suggests the DfT.
Demand management The DfT has developed a Travel Demand Management (TDM) policy toolkit. Local authorities adopting TDM will be able to: • understand the nature of likely demands on local transport provision • identify the necessary changes to how that provision is deployed • develop necessary travel advice and communications for parents and students • ensure appropriate monitoring and evaluation. Additional TDM support in the form of consultancy support and funding is available to local authorities in England, outside London, on completion of a TDM self-assessment.
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BACK TO SCHOOL Where it is safe and appropriate to do so, schools and colleges should encourage parents, staff and pupils to walk or cycle to school, says the DfT. “At a national level, at least 50% of journeys to school of two miles or less, and which are currently undertaken by public bus, need to switch to cycling and walking in order to make capacity available for those with longer journeys.” Promotional activities could include: • building on existing schemes (such as the Walk to School programme and Bikeability training) • encouraging schools and colleges to communicate directly with those pupils whose journeys are most appropriate for a switch to active travel to encourage them to do so • implementing ‘safe streets’ policies outside schools.
Reading up on School Streets SUSTRANS
Promoting active travel
Schools are also advised to engage with local businesses and employers to reduce other demand for public transport during peak school travel hours. The DfT suggests that the TDM policy toolkit will help local authorities to gather relevant information and develop plans with local businesses and employers.
School Streets are growing in popularity
New study reveals School Street closures could increase walking, cycling and wheeling to school
There will be increased use of cars for longer journeys that cannot be accommodated on public transport Department for Transport
Cars still have a role While the DfT emphasises the need to encourage walking and cycling, it concedes there will be increased use of cars for longer journeys that cannot be accommodated on public transport, contracted provision (coaches or similar) or realistically switched to active travel. “While it is strongly advised that parents, staff, and pupils walk and cycle as an alternative to public transport, to further reduce the demand on public transport and the need for additional capacity, local authorities should accept that those who can drive to school may do so,” the DfT states. “Local authorities must give active consideration to the impacts of increased car use on local congestion, and ensure that mitigations to minimise these impacts are implemented through their network management duty” However, the government expects local authorities to continue to discharge their duties in respect of sustainable travel and transport as placed by Section 508A of the Education Act 1996.
Staggering the school day Local authorities should work with schools and colleges to consider whether changing or staggering school start and finish times would reduce pressure on transport services, says the DfT. This has the potential, in some areas, to: • spread demand for school and college travel over a longer period • enable any additional capacity to be used more than once • increase significantly the ability of public transport to support school and college reopening • staggered start and finish times should not reduce the amount of overall teaching time. If there is still a need for additional transport capacity after all of the above measures have been considered, then local authorities should procure suitable vehicles by contracting additional coaches or other appropriate vehicles (where they are available at a local level) to provide dedicated school transport services.
chool Street closures can improve the number of children walking, cycling and wheeling to school without creating road safety problems, a study by Edinburgh Napier University. An increase in School Street closures would also not result in traffic displacement causing road safety issues in neighbouring streets, the study findings show. Edinburgh Napier’s Transport Research Institute teamed up with cycling and walking charity Sustrans for the project, which sets out the findings of a review of existing literature on the impact of School Street closures designed to create safer spaces for walking, cycling or street play. The study was led by Dr Adrian Davis, professor of transport and health at Edinburgh Napier University, who says: “It is noteworthy that such a simple intervention can have really positive impacts in terms of increasing childrens physical activity levels and with this the associated improvements in wellbeing. School Street closures look to be a win-win for residents, schools and children and their families.” A total of 16 studies – including three from Scottish authorities in Edinburgh, Perth and Kinross and East Lothian – were used to evidence the report. The findings of these 16 studies have been supplemented by semi-structured telephone interviews with relevant officers responsible for local authority School Street closure schemes. Alongside increasing active travel, the findings suggest that in almost all cases, the total number of motor vehicles across School Street closures and neighbouring streets reduced. There is consistent evidence that motor traffic displacement does not cause road safety issues of any significance and that mitigating measures, where needed, have been applied successfully by local authorities. The report suggests that School Street closures are supported by the majority of parents and residents living on the closed and neighbouring streets and that their support increases after any trial period. John Lauder, deputy chief executive of Sustrans, said: “With the growth in numbers of family groups discovering the joy of cycling, walking, and scootering during lockdown, and with many parents and guardians continuing to work at home, the return to school is a crucial moment. We want it to be easy and sensible for as many children as possible to get to and from school actively. This research shows clearly how School Street closures make the streets around schools safer, cleaner and healthier. It also shows that School Streets help increase active travel to school, making it easier for children to start the school day awake and alert. We call on local authorities to give this consideration.” The study was funded by the Road Safety Trust, whose chief executive, Sally Lines, said: “We want to make the roads safer for all users, in particular vulnerable road users which includes children, pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists, and the results from the literature review are a welcome step towards this.”
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The bus lane on John Dobson Street
Rejections and refunds Newcastle City Council disagrees with Traffic Penalty Tribunal, but says it will refund penalty charge notices
Penalty Tribunal has failed to provide any real substance or meaningful learnings in their report. Our legal team have scrutinised it closely, and there are so many gaping holes in this report, that we are minded to seek a judicial review and challenge it in court. However, as this could take years and at considerable expense to the public purse, I believe it is not in the public interest to take this course of action.” ewcastle City Council says it disagrees with a The original Traffic Penalty Tribunal (TPT) investigations, ruling by the Traffic Penalty Tribunal’s chief which ruled against the council, was conducted by adjudicator adjudicator that its signing of a bus lane misled Paul Pearson. The council subsequently asked chief adjudicator drivers, but has nevertheless agreed to refund Caroline Sheppard to review the case. In July, Sheppard ruled fines issued against over 60,000 drivers as a that the signage was “misleading and wrong” and that a sign “gesture of goodwill.” The tribunal’s chief adjucould easily be missed by motorists dicator, Caroline Sheppard, upheld if it was obscured by a bus. five appeals against penalty charge Newcastle commissioned a legal notices (PCNs) issued for driving in opinion of the tribunal’s decision the northbound bus lane on John Jonathan Easton of Kings Dobson Street. The Traffic Penalty Tribunal has failed to from Chambers. In his opinion, despite The council said it would not seek provide any real substance or agreeing that the bus lane signage a judicial review as this would be complied with regulations, and thereboth a lengthy and expensive process, meaningful learnings in its report fore met the legal test, Easton stated which would not be in the public Cllr Arlene Ainsley that, both the chief adjudicator and interest. However, in considering the the original adjudicator had gone implications of the chief adjudicator’s on to apply an additional overarching report, the council requested a legal test that went above and beyond the opinion and this concluded that the scope of the legal requirements. decision contains a number of legal Furthermore, Easton argued that the TPT’s decision placed an flaws. The legal opinion states that the tribunal’s case review into unreasonably high burden on the city council by suggesting that bus lane signage, which took over three years to complete, there should have been additional signage and by failing to give contains a number of potential legal errors and could place an strong reasons as to why the existing signage was considered to unreasonably high burden on the city council. be inadequate, given that it did meet the legal test. Cllr Arlene Ainsley, cabinet member for transport and air The legal opinion said the TPT’s chief adjudicator also failed to quality, said: “After waiting three long years for the chief adjudicator take an objective and overall approach to considering compliance to review her findings, I am bitterly disappointed that the Traffic
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A driver’s view when heading north on the slip road off the A167(M) approaching the roundabout with a sign indicating ‘City Centre B1309’, accompanied by Shopmobility graphic (Google Street View, June2018)
Driving north on John Dobson Street approaching North Street turnoff left. The bus ahead is obscuring the oncoming directional sign for the bus lane and available turn-offs at this point (still from NCC video)
View of second available left-turn off John Dobson Street when driving north, before the bus lane, on to Ridley Place. This follows a preceding directional sign (indicated as ‘Ridley Pl only’). Note that a driver faces dead-ends straight-on and right (Google Street View, August 2018) and failed to acknowledge the inconsistencies with previous adjudications, including by the same original adjudicator, which had found that the signage was adequate. Easton wrote: “The error is this: having concluded that the signs were substantially compliant (and therefore met the legal test) they [Pearson and Sheppard] both went on to apply some additional overarching test that does not appear in the regulations or from the case law.” Easton argued that Sheppard appeared to distinguish the “substantial compliance” approach by arguing that it only applies to parking contraventions and that somehow a different approach should be taken when considering moving traffic penalties. “This is a misreading of the law as decided by the Courts,” he suggested. “Caroline Sheppard criticised signage at the A167(M) roundabout for being misleading and that was sufficient to quash the PCNs. The only way to read this finding is that all of the other signs before the bus gate could have been perfectly adequate but the single alleged failing at the roundabout renders that completely irrelevant,” wrote Easton. “This is an error of law.”
Easton also suggests: “Caroline Sheppard appears to have inserted an extra requirement to sign directions for an alternative route avoiding the bus gate. The requirement to sign an alternative route in addition to signing the restriction, is step too far and not within the scope of a reasonable reading of Regulation 18. In any event, I am advised by Newcastle City Council’s technical officers that the regulations relating to traffic signs would not allow signage of an alternative route in any event.” Easton noted that Sheppard took into account the fact that the appellants did not live in Newcastle. “It is well established that compliance with Regulation 18 is an objective, not a subjective test,” wrote Easton. “It should therefore be irrelevant that the appellants did not reside in Newcastle. “I consider that Caroline Sheppard took account of irrelevant considerations when criticising the advance direction sign close to Ridley Place. Whether Ridley Place is a no through road is neither here nor there, in my view. The requirement is to adequately convey the effect of a restriction, not to provide the most convenient alternative route avoiding the restriction. In an ideal world, that would be the case but I cannot see how it is a breach of Regulation 18 if a person needed to undertake a 3point turn at the end of Ridley Place.” Easton also took issue with the slow progress that the TPT made on the review, writing: “It is extremely disappointing that it took three years for the chief adjudicator to issue the decision and, so far as I am aware, no proper explanation has ever been given for this delay.” Newcastle City Council said it will review the northbound bus lane signage to look at what changes can be made before any enforcement resumes. It is estimated that bus lane enforcement cameras caught 92,000 vehicles between February 2016 and June 2017, when the cameras were switched off. The council could end up repaying up to £2.5m, as just over 65,200 drivers could be entitled to a refund and just over 73,000 PCNs were issued before cameras were turned off in 2017. Drivers who have paid a penalty charge notice for this specific bus lane are being offered a refund. Cllr Ainsley said: “There is no legal obligation for us to offer refunds as we have consistently upheld Department for Transport (DfT) requirements, to the letter. However, as a gesture of goodwill, the council is offering a refund to anyone who has paid a penalty charge notice for the northbound bus lane on John Dobson Street since February 2016. Refunds will not be offered for the southbound lane, which will continue to be enforced as it has been throughout. We have always stated that the cameras are not there to generate income but to help buses run on time in the city centre and to their destinations in our neighbourhoods and the wider region.” People are encouraged to make their applications before Friday 9 October – which allows eight weeks for people to apply. www.newcastle.gov.uk/jdsrefunds
Call on DfT to end confusion Newcastle City Council wants the government and the Traffic Penalty Tribunal to resolve confusion over how councils should sign bus lanes. Newcastle cabinet member for transport Cllr Arlene Ainsley said: “We will install additional signage on John Dobson Street, over and beyond DfT guidelines, and start enforcement again, after a suitable warning period. We also intend to start enforcement on other key routes for buses once we are satisfied they are the right schemes and the signage has been installed. “In the meantime we will continue to work with the Local Government Association and other core cities to lobby the TPT and the DfT to get together and sort this nonsense once and for all, which is causing confusion for local authorities, bus companies and motorists across the country. “Bus lanes play an important part in our city’s future. Our long-held ambitions are for an efficient public transport system that benefits everyone, and a clean and green city, that is not choked by cars and pollution; and we will not allow this inadequate review to detract us from this any longer.”
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Appeals Charter unveiled
Government launches consultation on new code of practice and framework
new ‘Appeals Charter’ that aims to eliminate penalties for motorists who make genuine errors, or who have mitigating circumstances, when falling foul of rules covering parking on private land has been published by the government. The charter will form part of a new code of practice and framework designed to regulate the management of parking on private land. The government also proposes: a tiered system that differentiates between major and minor offences; a maximum cap for parking charge notices; a 10-
The key proposals Under options set out in the Appeals Charter, motorists could be able to appeal their fine and see it reduced to a maximum of £20, or cancelled entirely if: • they have a mitigating reason for overstaying their parking ticket such as their vehicle breaking down • they have made a genuine innocent error, like keying in a digit in their number plate incorrectly • they have a valid ticket, permit or Blue Badge but failed to display it correctly. The government consultation also proposes: • A new, tiered approach to parking fines with a cap for less serious offences between £40 and £80 depending on the parking charge system chosen (but both lower than the current £100 cap), and a new, increased fine of up to £120 for drivers who wrongly park in disabled bays or ambulance bays • A compulsory 10-minute grace period before firms can issue a late fine • A compulsory 5-minute cooling-off period in which a motorist can consider the terms and conditions and change their mind about parking • A crackdown on parking firms using aggressive or pseudolegal language to intimidate motorists into paying fines • A requirement for parking firms to clearly display pricing and terms and conditions of parking, contact details and how to appeal a charge. Note: While the government refers to “fines”, private operators actually issue parking charge notices.
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minute grace period before a late charges can be issued; and a requirement for parking firms to clearly display pricing as well as terms and conditions. The new code and framework would also see the creation of a mandatory single appeals service and an appeals charter for motorists to turn to if they are unfairly fined. “These new measures are a victory for the millions of motorists across the country,” said communities secretary Robert Jenrick. “They will put a stop once and for all to rogue parking firms using aggressive tactics and handing out unfair parking tickets with no right to appeal, while also boosting our high streets by making it easier for people to park near their local shops without being unfairly fined. Our proposals will restore common sense to the way parking fines are issued, while cracking down on the worst offenders who put other people in danger and hinder our emergency services from carrying out their duties.” Unlike existing voluntary codes set by industry, the new code and enforcement framework will be mandatory and provide a single set of rules to follow. Parking firms that break the code could be barred from requesting Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) data, making them unable to pursue motorists for their charges through the post. The new code would apply across England, Scotland and Wales. Jenrick said: “We want to get people back onto the high street to shop local and support small businesses, and these proposals mean motorists will be able to do so without having to worry about being landed with an unjust ticket and no way to appeal. These measures will drive up standards in the parking industry by clamping down on rogue operators and offering a safety net so that responsible motorists who make an innocent mistake are not penalised unfairly for doing so.” The Parking (Code of Practice) Act became law in March 2019 and builds on action the government previously taken to tackle rogue private parking firms, including banning wheel clamping under the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012. The Parking (Code of Practice) Bill was a Private Member’s Bill introduced by Sir Greg Knight MP, supported by the government and received Royal Assent in March 2019. It covers England, Wales, and Scotland creating consistency for motorists everywhere in Britain. Sir Greg said: “I am delighted that a new statutory code of practice on parking now moves a step closer to being introduced. This whole process is intended to stop unfair and dodgy practices arising. The new code of practice, when implemented, will, I believe, make the process of parking fairer and more transparent for all concerned.”
Consulting on the code The new code has been drafted by the British Standards Institute (BSI) in consultation with stakeholders from across the motoring, property and parking sectors. Scott Steedman, director of standards at BSI, said: “In our role as the national standards body, BSI brought together industry experts and consumer groups to reach consensus on a new standard to support better parking practice in the operation and management of parking facilities on private land. “This new standard, called PAS 232 Privately managed parking – Operation and management, is available for public comment until 12 October 2020. Once all the comments have been reviewed by the steering group, we plan to publish the standard at the earliest opportunity.” The consultation for the new Parking Code of Practice will be published on the BSI website and will run until 12 October. The consultation for the new Parking Enforcement Framework will be published on GOV.UK and will also run until 12 October.
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It will end in tiers... The enforcement of terms and conditions for parking private land to become more structured The New Appeals Charter proposed by the government proposes a more structured approach to enforcing terms and regulations on private land. It could reduce parking charges to between £0 and £20 for the issues below: • Significant evidence of mitigation or genuine, legitimate reason – fine cancelled • Non-evidenced mitigation – if accepted, fine reduced to between £0 and £20 dependent upon the circumstances • Evidenced vehicle breakdown – fine cancelled for motorist and recovery vehicle • Failure to display permit/Blue Badge/pay & display ticket (copy then supplied) – fine reduced to between £0 and £20 • Keying error at pay & display machine – Minor (one letter wrong, removed or swapped or numbers and letters in the wrong order but still recognisable) – fine cancelled • Keying error at pay & display machine – Major (motorist enters their partner’s registration, multiple keying errors or only partial number plate entered) – fine reduced to between £0 and £20. The government is also proposing a new-tiered system for parking fines. There are 2 options for this, with two or three tiers proposed.
The 3-tier approach The 3-tier system could operate as follows: Upper Level Breach up to a cap of £120 (discounted to £70 when paid within 14 days) for the most serious breaches which put motorists or others in danger or relate to anti-social behaviour with a direct impact on the vulnerable or business revenue, including: • Parking in an accessible bay (Blue Badge bay) • Parking where parking not permitted such as in an ambulance bay or outside fire escape • Obstructive or dangerous parking to the detriment of others • Parking in service/loading areas and/or yellow box, hatched areas. Middle Level Breach up to a cap of £100 (discounted to £60 when paid within 14 days) for breaches that, while not as serious as the upper level, still impact upon businesses, landowners, the environment and genuine customers or car park users:
• • • • •
Parking in a reserved bay (parent & toddler) Parking on pavement where parking is not permitted Parked in ‘Staff Parking Only’ area Overstay of maximum free period or paid-for tariff. Vehicle exceeds maximum weight and/or height and/or length permitted in the area • Parking across multiple bays. Lower Level Breach up to a cap of £80 (discounted to £50 when paid within 14 days) for poor parking or issues that cause inconvenience to other car park users: • Parking in bays for other classes of vehicles such as motorcycles or scooters, bicycles or taxis • Use of an expired permit • Re-parking/returning within prohibited period • Parking where parking not permitted such as grass verges or landscaped areas • Parking with engine running where prohibited • Permit displayed not valid for area occupied.
The 2-tier approach Alternatively, a 2-tier system could mirror that found in local authority parking regulations. This local authority system operates as follows outside of London: Upper Level Breach between £60 – £70 (discounted to £30 – 35), including: • Parked in a suspended bay/space or part of bay/space • Parked in a residents’ or shared use parking place without clearly displaying either a permit or voucher or pay & display ticket issued for that place • Parked in a restricted area in a car park • Parked in a designated disabled person’s parking place without clearly displaying a valid disabled person’s badge. Lower Level Breach between £40 to 50 (discounted to £20 to £25) • All other contraventions would fall into this penalty charge level.
London For London, penalty charges are set by the London local authorities acting jointly and by Transport for London, with the approval of the Mayor (and provided that the Secretary of State does not object). There are two tiers as set out below with a higher penalty charge level and different contraventions that fall into each level. Again, lower-tier councils can choose a slightly lower charge, as long as they apply it consistently: • Upper Level Breach between £110 – £130 (discounted to £55 – £65) • Lower Level Breach between £60 – £80 (discounted to £30 – £40).
Parking sector prepares for change Parking associations and motoring organisation respond to the government’s proposed code of practice for private operators There are two parking trade associations, the British Parking Association (BPA) and the International Parking Community (IPC). Each has created a code of practice that their members are required to abide by. These codes will be superseded by the new single document created under the Parking (Code of Practice) Act 2019. Each association also has its own DVLAapproved parking operator scheme and have created separate appeals services for drivers who want to challenge parking charge notices. These appeals services will be replaced by a single, independent body. Will Hurley, chief executive of the IPC, said: “The parking code of practice is an opportunity to build on the experience of industry codes and provide motorists and landowners with greater clarity, ensuring motorists are able to park easily and
securely. We believe that some key changes are required to the draft code, as well as the proposals for the wider regulatory framework that will support it, to protect landowners and motorists from the small minority that misuse private land and parking spaces. “If we get this wrong, the people who will suffer are not those who regularly breach parking rules or rogue operators, but the people reliant on parking to access high streets, hospitals, train stations, their workplace and even their home, as well as landowners large and small. We intend to work with government and our partners to help address these challenges and ensure land can be managed in the interest of motorists and landowners.” Steve Clark, the British Parking Association’s head of business operations
said “We welcome progress with the Act and will continue to work closely with government and others, including consumer groups to design a framework which provides a fair outcome for motorists, landowners and parking operators alike. The Act supports our call for a standard setting body, a single code of practice, and a single independent appeals service, all of which are vital to ensure a common framework for effective parking management on private land.” The new charter has also been welcomed by the motoring sector. Steve Gooding, director of the RAC Foundation, chaired a stakeholder group that advised on the drafting of the new code of practice. He said: “The publication of the government’s consultation document alongside the BSI’s draft code of practice is a major milestone in bringing the provisions of Sir Greg Knight’s Parking Act to life. It is clearly important that we get the code of practice, and the framework within which it will sit, right, so I would encourage everyone with an interest to respond with their views.”
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Manger joins ZatPark’s management team Building relationships with public and private sector clients is mission Parking software provider ZatPark has appointed Gavin Manger as its new head of solutions. Manger worked at operators Central Parking System and NCP, before taking responsibility for managing the Transport for London Road Network during the 2012 London Olympic and Paralympic Games. Since then Manger has held roles with both local authorities and parking technology companies, most recently JustPark. “Gavin is a very exciting addition to the team,” said Dave Herbert, chief executive and founder of ZatPark. “He shares our views on the importance of parking as part of a dynamic transport system and the importance of technologies as progressive solutions that create cost, time and resource benefits to customers and end users. “Gavin brings over 30 years of knowledge, experience and
Gavin Manger understanding of the parking community that will be an important factor in the next phase of our growth.” Manger joined ZatPark in August and will be working with
ParkVia touches down in Albania
Tirana Airport Airport parking reservation provider ParkVia has opened up its 44th market by signing a deal in Albania. ParkVia is now offering pre-booked parking for Tirana Airport, Albania’s only international airport. The Tirana deal marks a kickstart for the UK-based parking brand’s campaign for growth following a hiatus for COVID-19. Ben Fox, head of marketing at ParkVia, said: “Reinforcing our already strong European product offering is a key focus for us right now, so we’re delighted to have added Tirana
to our stable of locations. Our travel partners are looking to maximise profits in 2021 and take advantage of market consolidation, so it is important that we have the right inventory available at the right locations. “Tirana has consistently been one of the fastest growing major airports in the Balkans and with the adoption of e-commerce and online booking exploding in 2020, ParkVia is well placed to support both our partners and car parks in taking advantage of this.”
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current clients as well as developing relationships across the private and public sectors. Manger said: “I know many of my colleagues in the sector are facing challenges like never
before, and I am inspired by the solutions and level of service the ZatPark team deliver. “The togetherness of the team at ZatPark is hugely impressive. I have been struck by the work ethic and determination to be ‘Everyday Better’ shown by each one of my colleagues. This spirit was underlined by the team delivering two major developments and on-boarding eight new clients in the past six months. “When I initially spoke with the directors earlier this year, I was inspired by not only their business plan and technical roadmap but also the collective desire to help the parking community be more efficient and effective in how we work and evolve as an industry.” ZatPark was launched in 2010 by Dave Herbert and Lukasz Kieruczenko in order to help parking operators to become more efficient through the automation and systemisation of back office processes. During its first ten years, over 11 million contraventions have been processed through ZatPark.
Walter supports Videalert clients Traffic management and enforcement solutions provider Videalert has appointed David Walter as its hosted systems engineer. He will provide technical support for the company’s hosted CCTV enforcement platform, which is now used by more than 50 councils across the UK. He will be a member of Videalert’s help desk team, which supports clients and conducts pro-active system checks to ensure installed systems deliver maximum uptime. Walter, an experienced IT implementation and support professional, joins Videalert from Concentrix, a business services company, where he held a number
of key positions, including IT operations analyst. In this role, he was responsible for ensuring uninterrupted operational services to clients, maintaining enterprise Wi-Fi infrastructures and launching projects for clients in the financial, telecoms and transport sectors.
WPS pays tribute to Phil Humphrey WPS has announced the death of one of its longest-serving employees, Phil Humphrey, following a sudden illness. Humphrey joined WPS in the late 1990s and worked for the business as its technical manager. Simon Jarvis, managing director of WPS in the UK, says that Phil will be sorely missed: “Phil was a wonderfully likeable man and we were all immensely fond of him. His enthusiasm, extensive knowledge and readiness to help were qualities known by clients, partners and suppliers alike. “Phil’s contribution to the business over the years has been invaluable and we will always be indebted to him. He was both a highly regarded colleague and a dear friend. We extend our wholehearted sympathies to Phil’s family.”
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Ashford to head up DCB Legal Litigation expert to build business at DBCL’s legal arm Jamie Ashford has been appointed as director of DCB Legal, the legal arm of debt recovery specialist Direct Collection Bailiffs Ltd (DCBL). As an experienced litigation lawyer, Ashford has a detailed knowledge of pre- and post-legal procedures. He plans to structure DCB Legal Ltd in such a way that maximises its ability to sue on bulk, whilst maintaining high standards. DCB Legal works for DCBL directly and also its own standalone client list. After completing his undergraduate degree, Ashford studied at the University of Law in Chester in 2007. He then continued his studies there gaining his master’s degree in International Legal Practice. Beginning his legal career over a decade ago as a trainee at a niche banking litigation firm, Ashford quickly realised the market he wanted to specialise in
Jamie Ashford was debt recovery and litigation. Ashford was admitted to the Roll of Lawyers in 2012 and become head of legal at a regional law firm specialising in disputed parking charges. In this position, he was also responsible for a variety of commercial litigation cases and commercial contract drafting. Desiring a change of scenery, he emigrated to Amsterdam to
work in an international litigation team specialising in crossborder disputes. Now back in the UK, and wishing to focus on his speciality, parking litigation, Ashford joined DCB Legal. Ashford said he wants to build on DCB Legal’s business objective of: “Investing in technology and people, to provide an end-to-end litigation service for its clients.”
Shirley to head DfT acceleration unit The Department for Transport has appointed the chief executive of the Campaign for Better Transport (CBT) to head its new Acceleration Unit. Darren Shirley will lead the new team of non-government specialists to drive progress on key projects. The unit will be accountable to transport secretary Grant Shapps. “I am delighted to take on this important new role, bringing a fresh perspective and external advice to accelerate the delivery of key infrastructure projects and programmes,” said Shirley. At CBT he succeeded Stephen Joseph as head of the environmental public transport group in August 2018 and had previously been at the consumer campaigning group Which? where he led on its regulated and retail markets campaigning. Before joining Which?, he was active in the environmental sector, working for WWF, Greenpeace UK and National Energy Action. The CBT has begun the search for a new chief executive.
PayByPhone UK steps up to Carbon Neutral Plus accreditation We currently supply and have vacancies around the UK for Permanent and Temporary positions: • Civil Enforcement Officers • Environmental Enforcement Officers • Parking Back Office (Appeals/Notice Processing/Correspondence) • Parking Change Management • Interim Parking Managers • Car Park Attendants/Marshalls/Stewarding
PayByPhone has achieved Carbon Neutral Plus status in the UK. Carbon Neutral Plus is an accreditation awarded to organisations that offset more than 10% of their carbon footprint. PayByPhone first gained Carbon Neutral status in 2019, following an assessment by Carbon Footprint, a body that helps organisations offset carbon emissions and promote their environmental credentials. PayByPhone offset its carbon footprint by backing the Portel-Pará REDD, a Verified Carbon Standard (VCS) audited project in the Amazon rainforest that combats deforestation. Jonny Combe, PayByPhone’s UK chief executive, said: “We are
delighted to have achieved Carbon Neutral Plus status just a year after becoming carbon neutral. Following our annual audit with Carbon Footprint it was confirmed that we had offset 10% more than our carbon footprint, an achievement we are very proud of. “Through our multi-awardwinning Meters for Trees programme, which we launched in July 2019, we are also helping local authorities to cut their carbon emissions by reducing the number of miles driven by parking machine maintenance and cash collection teams, as well as offsetting emissions by donating trees both in the UK and supporting deforestation in the Amazon rainforest.”
• Parking Supervisors (Both Enforcement and Back Office) • Parking Management (Both Enforcement and Back Office) • Heads of Parking/Directors • Parking Technologies (Business Development and Project Managers/ Field Service Engineers/General Managers)
• Off Street Parking (Business Development, Contract Managers and Regional Managers)
• CCTV Operators – SIA and BTEC qualified
Looking for staff or need employment? Please contact our experienced team on: Tel: 0203 668 5680 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Web: www.unity-recruitment.co.uk
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As green recovery projects are being delivered across the country, let’s hope that we lock in some of the good behavioural and environmental benefits of our new normal Nick Ruxton-Boyle
A fresh approach to clean air strategies COVID-19 has delayed the launch of clean air zones in England. But councils should act now to build on the environmental benefits that came with lockdown, writes Nick Ruxton-Boyle
he Clean Air Zones (CAZs) in Birmingham, Leeds and Bath, which were set to go live this summer, have been postponed until at least early 2021. Elsewhere, the Greater Manchester CAZ, due to be implemented next year, has also been postponed. Bristol City Council, meanwhile, was due to introduce a CAZ next April but has said it will be delayed because of the economic damage it would do to businesses already hit by COVID-19. With the lockdown easing slowly and traffic levels (at least on the Department for Transport network) back at over 90%, there are signs that we may be on the road to recovery. There is, however, a slightly different picture emerging from local networks, with many cities, particularly in the north of the country, reporting very low traffic and parking statistics complemented by very positive roadside pollution figures. With offices still empty and children set to return to school, there has never been such uncertainty as to how the transport
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networks will function over the next six to twelve months, and how to plan for it.
The Danish model One source of potential data for re-forecasting is Wuhan in China – remember Wuhan? The city’s lockdown cycle took a familiar course, with traffic levels returning to pre-COVID-19 levels and beyond, reflected in lower public transport use, which sounds familiar. In Scotland something similar has happened, with Transport Scotland pausing the Low Emission Zone (LEZ) programmes in the big cities. However, the situation is different in Europe. During the height of the lockdown, the Danish Environment Protection Agency launched LEZs in five cities. These have similarities and differences to the emission-based schemes we have in the UK. Based on air quality data, boundaries have been drawn up around the most polluted areas, which are enforced using ANPR cameras backed up with a penalty charge deterrent. They are similar to the Scottish LEZs as one cannot pay to drive in the zones in a polluting vehicle (unlike the English CAZs), but they are designed to address particulates, rather than NOx. The Danish scheme is at soft launch stage until October 2020. At Marston Holdings we have been working on the scheme with the cities across Denmark, including offering guidance on retrofit filters to drivers and fleet operators.
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Copenhagen is one of five cities where the Danish Environment Protection Agency has launched a low emission zone cities. Is it time to look at a national CAZ, LEZ or mileage-based Given that the new Environment Bill sets out a new (yet to be road user charging solution? defined) target for particulates, we can learn from our colleagues Do we use these tools to drive particulate or carbon reduction in Europe and possibly look at future proofing our own CAZ and in line with our existing net zero commitments and new environLEZ schemes to allow a transition to addressing different, and mental targets? equally dangerous, pollutants. Lockdown has given the public a glimpse of what it is like to The uncertainty around Brexit means it is still not clear what have fewer vehicles on the road, and cleaner air, and for the most form the regulatory framework for air pollution will take. The part they like it. That governmentâ€™s Joint Air said, the benefits of Quality Unit (JAQU) is improved air quality responsible for the have been offset by the central CAZ services adverse impact on the including DVLA emisLockdown has given the public a glimpse of what it is economy and society. sion look-ups and paylike to have fewer vehicles on the road, and cleaner air, Many of us do not ment portal. and for the most part they like it relish returning to the JAQU is working daily commute after with all the CAZ cities Nick Ruxton-Boyle the biggest working across the country and from home experiment transport and enforcein history. As green ment organisations, recovery projects are such as Marston being delivered across the country, letâ€™s hope that we lock in some Holdings, to ensure the CAZ schemes meet all current requirements of the good behavioural and environmental benefits of our including ensuring foreign vehicles are not exempt. As in Denmark, new normal. foreign vehicles will be subject to the same emission standards as domestic vehicles and action will be taken to ensure these vehicles are identified, assessed and enforced against in line with the Nick Ruxton-Boyle is director of environment at Marston Holdings local rules.
Road user charging As we slowly emerge from lockdown, local authorities must find a way of coping with severely diminished revenue streams. With car parking revenue down and regional and government funding paused or recalled, a new approach to transport and environmental project financing is urgently needed. Charging polluting vehicles is not, in itself, a revenue generation solution, and CAZ cities are rightly designing schemes so they meet their NOx targets in the quickest possible time. There is much uncertainty over what we do next, and in particular how to get the best public value out of the extensive network of ANPR cameras installed across our most polluted
CAZ and LEZ webinar The future of clean air zone (CAZ) and low emission zone (LEZ) schemes in a post-COVID world will be discussed at a webinar hosted by Marston Holdings and organised by Landor LINKS on 21 October 2020. The panel will include technical transport and air quality experts, JAQU and a representative from the Danish Environment Protection Agency. The session will consider the current challenges in developing and implementing and maintaining air quality solutions in an uncertain world. For more details e-mail Jason Conboy at email@example.com Previous webinars can be found on the Landor LINKS Live channel.
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Socially distanced staycationers wait to pay at a Lake District car park (our photographer wisely paid by phone using MiPermit!)
The great holiday experiment Staycations have exposed the need for coherent strategies to manage leisure traffic, writes Alasdair Kirkbride
ress images of phalanxes of badly or illegally parked cars set against beautiful backdrops of beaches or hills may become one of the enduring images of post-lockdown Britain. What led to this bedlam, what’s being done, and what does it say about (spoiler alert!) the vacuum in policy and appropriate governance around leisure and visitor transport? We are watching – and probably taking part in – a big action research experiment since the easing of lockdown. The ‘staycation boom’ has been mainly due to restrictions and the reluctance of people to travel overseas. One survey reported internet searches for terms related to travel abroad were down by 56% compared with 2019, and up 103% for travelling in the UK. Some destinations in the Lake District report an extra 40% of visitors compared with a normal year, and there are many reports of UK visitor accommodation having been booked solid during the 2020 summer school holidays. However, capacity on public transport – to and in-destination – has been severely restricted, so many people have just not been willing to consider using public transport for leisure travel. As lockdown eased, volumes of visitor cars heading to beaches and National Parks were significantly greater than usual. In the early stages (late May to July), headlines were about angry residents and traffic chaos. There were just more cars at destinations than capacity for parking, leading to images of roads lined with parked cars. Also, local authorities were just not geared up for managing the scale of the problem. The initial response led (in June and July) to enhanced enforcement, followed by two more constructive responses. Firstly, several of the busier National Parks including the Lake District, Peak District, Snowdonia and Brecon Beacons offered ways for visitors to check in near real-time where parking was
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available. This relied on a combination of immediately available technology (social media) coupled with on-the-ground staff, often across a wide range of organisations. Snowdonia took this further by setting up a pre-booking service for its busiest car park at Peny-Pass complemented by enhanced park & ride from Llanberis and more stringent enforcement. Secondly, traffic was better managed to some locations. In the Cairngorms, roads are being closed to visitor traffic once car parks are full at Lock Muick and Linn of Dee. In the Lake District, Emergency Traffic Regulation Orders (ETROs) were used to restrict traffic on the east shore of Coniston Water, with other TROs being considered for other locations, and in Wasdale temporary variable message signs (VMS) are being used at the valley entrance advising visitors when parking is at capacity. Unfortunately, these interventions are limited and visitor car congestion (traffic and parking) continues to be a widespread problem. So, what does this suggest for the future? Visitors primarily want a good day out – they are often looking for a great shared experience in an attractive place. Most don’t have a clear plan for their day so there is a lot of opportunity for suggestion and some pretty robust nudging.
Pre-booked parking introduced at Pen-y-Pass
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Mountain rescued Pre-booked parking and yellow lines are being introduced in Snowdonia, writes Mark Moran TRAFFIC WALES
Post-lockdown responses have demonstrated elements of an initial access model for busy visitor sites in rural areas, and which several are considering for the 2021 visitor season. This involves visitor car access via pre-bookable parking for the safe capacity, then (visitor) traffic restrictions at gateway sites coupled with onwards access solutions. Non-car access from the gateways would be by shuttle (assuming social distancing will be less of an issue by the 2021 season) plus bike and (e)bikes available via public bike share or rental models. Integrating these into an ‘access ticket’ would help provide a neat visitor proposition.
As lockdown eased, volumes of visitor cars heading to beaches and National Parks were much greater than usual Alasdair Kirkbride
In the medium-term, making such systems the norm – especially at peak times – would be akin to town centre pedestrianisations. This not only ensures public acceptance, but enhances experiences (for most people), and can increase volumes whilst reducing the damaging impacts of cars. It also provides an important first step in changing how the public see these sorts of places in providing solutions to the enduring problems of peak-season congestion. Some people would not like these solutions, but many would, it could (would?) attract the sorts of people who currently do not visit and would significantly reduce the blight (and increase the benefits) to local resident communities. Perhaps the most important issue that these events has exposed is the policy and governance gap in which leisure travel operates. National Travel Survey (NTS) data suggest that leisure travel (day trips, holidays, visiting friends and relatives and ‘other leisure’) account for 63% of all personal miles travelled by all modes. Policy relating to leisure travel tends to sit at the intersection of other policy areas while not having any coherence itself. The governance gap was highlighted in proposal 19 of a Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs-commissioned review of the National Parks chaired by nature writer Julian Glover – Proposal 19 called for: “A new approach to coordinating public transport piloted in the Lake District, and new, more sustainable ways of accessing national landscapes.” This idea is now the subject of ongoing work. There are three live opportunities to create the necessary coherence to frame and direct better leisure access and transport to rural visitor destinations, for which the more progressive interventions could be re-considered as inadvertent demonstration projects: the Department for Transport’s (DfT’s) emerging decarbonisation plan (focussing on carbon wins from managing demand); the DfT’s emerging rural Future of Mobility strategy (ensuring that leisure travel in rural areas is considered explicitly); and the development of different possible governance arrangements for transport in protected landscapes following the Glover review. We could look at this a different way. If the more progressive approaches and powers of metro mayors were applied to the problems (and opportunities) of visitor access and transport to National Parks and popular beach areas and other rural areas, what sort of access and transport systems would they design? We are getting closer, but a clear articulation of a progressive access and transport system for an area would then allow for robust appraisals of impacts (on landscape, emissions, prosperity, fairness etc.), and create a whole set of new areas for the development and marketing of some fantastic visitor experiences. Alistair Kirkbride specialises is a transport and tourism with specific interests in rural areas and National Parks
Yellow lines and cones now line the Ogwen Valley Snowdonia National Park has seen a big increase in numbers of visitors since coronavirus lockdown restrictions were eased. The influx of visitors resulted in traffic congestion and anti-social parking on mountain roads. On just one day in July more than 180 cars were fined for illegal parking on mountain roads while during August North Wales Police started towing vehicles for parking on the side of the A5 road in the Ogwen Valley (Dyffryn Ogwen). Snowdonia National Park (Parc Cenedlaethol Eryri) has been working with Gwynedd Council, North Wales Police and Traffic Wales to implement traffic management and parking enforcement measures that encourage people to plan their journeys and park safely. Traffic Wales has been installing double yellow lines and cones to deter illegal parking in the Ogwen Valley. People hoping to use the popular Pen-y-Pass car park at the foot of Snowdon (Yr Wyddfa) at weekends and on Bank Holidays now have to pre-book. Booked visitors will be required to show their confirmation email on arrival to gain access to the car park. Anyone without a pre-booked space will need to use the regular Sherpa park & ride facilities at the Nant Peris and Llanberis car parks to access Pen-y-Pass. The National Park, council and police see the pre-paid parking trial at Pen-y-Pass as an opportunity to assess the impact of new management models explored in a current consultation that could better align with the long-term needs of the area. A consultancy team appointed by the Snowdonia Partnership (Partneriaeth Yr Wyddfa) has been analysing various factors surrounding the parking and transport issues in the Yr Wyddfa and Ogwen area. The consultation revealed an appetite for an integrated, sustainable tourism offer. The consultant’s recommendations include adopting what is termed as an ‘Alpine style’ model of managing the area which could transform how people approach travel in the region. The draft proposals seek to fit with the ethos of the Wellbeing of Future Generations (Wales) Act, placing an emphasis on community master-planning, partnership working, encouragement of entrepreneurial skills and job creation for local audiences, whilst strongly promoting and sustaining the special qualities of the National Park. Following the consultation and analysis of available data, the consultants have been modelling options and scrutinising potential approaches. The findings of the Parking and Transport Review will be shared with the Snowdonia Partnership and key stakeholders in the autumn.
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Clyde Loakes, Waltham Forest’s deputy leader and cabinet member for environment
Traffic calmer Waltham Forest’s Cllr Clyde Loakes believes that the creation of streets where cycling and walking take precedence over the car show that Low Traffic Neighbourhood schemes can turn urban centres into people-friendly places. Deniz Huseyin reports
OVID-19 has given impetus to local authority plans to develop Low Traffic Neighbourhoods as part of the government’s Emergency Active Travel Fund and Transport for London’s (TfL’s) Streetspace Plan. Low Traffic Neighbourhoods (LTNs) are groups of residential streets, bordered by main roads, where through traffic is discouraged or removed. A longtime proponent of these measures is Clyde Loakes, Waltham Forest’s deputy leader and cabinet member for environment. He has gained a reputation for challenging the dominance of the car in the London borough. For Loakes the catalyst for change came in 2014 when the council secured £27m in MiniHolland funding from TfL. This has seen the roll-out of segregated cycle tracks, modal filters – in which a through road is closed to motorised traffic but not to cyclists – pocket parks, station cycle hubs and bike hangars. The council is now building on this with a new set of Low Traffic Neighbourhood schemes. But not everyone welcomes the changes, with some arguing that stopping through-traffic will damage local economies. Loakes
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firmly disputed this when speaking at the Landor LINKS Low Traffic Neighbourhoods webinar. Loakes stated: “Opponents of Low Traffic Neighbourhoods want you to believe that if you can’t get in your car and go the exact same route that you have been driving for the past 20 years then civilisation is going to collapse, shops will close, businesses will fail. In reality that does not happen and there is no proof – in Waltham Forest, in London, in the UK, across the globe! – that it happens. On the contrary, what is proven is people spend more money in their locality, and in a post-COVID world more people are going to be working more often from home. “Clearly, they are going to use their local shops more and they will be walking and cycling because that will be part of their daily exercise routine that perhaps they would not have done when they went down to the tube or rail station. So, actually, the time for Low Traffic Neighbourhoods has never been better! “It is time to reject the status quo where the needs of cars dictated how we designed our residential streets and how we designed our neighbourhoods.”
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Opponents of Low Traffic Neighbourhoods believe that if they can’t drive the exact same route that they’ve been driving for the past 20 years then civilisation will collapse, shops close and businesses fail! Cllr Clyde Loakes
Stopping through-traffic Waltham Forest sits in north-east London, within the A12 and A406 and close to the M11 and M25, making it a commuting and logistics “rat-run”, said Loakes. Mini-Holland and LTN projects mean through-traffic is reverting to main roads in the borough, such as Lea Bridge Road and Hoe Street. Upgraded traffic management systems on the main roads mean that through-traffic is now flowing far more efficiently, Loakes said. “We have seen an improvement in bus times on these roads too, so it is not just a case of ‘Oh, you have dumped all this extra traffic on these main roads’. It is about, first, reducing short-based car journeys and sole-occupancy car journeys, which was something like 60% of all the journeys in Waltham Forest. Then it is about how you address other traffic that still needs to come into Waltham Forest and how you move that traffic through more effectively and efficiently.” Loakes said Waltham Forest now has more than 30km of segregated cycle track, 51 modal filters, 31 pocket parks, seven station cycle hubs and 500 cycle hangars, and 145 blended crossings (which are designed to slow down vehicles entering or exiting side roads and encourage vehicles to give way to pedestrians crossing the road). During 2019 the council removed 900 parking spaces and has taken out 465 spaces so far this year, said Loakes. “We are removing car parking spaces as we start to reprioritise the borough in favour of people.” Car ownership in the borough has declined to about 50% of households, and nearer to 40% in some wards, he said. “The vast majority of the time the car just sits there, parked up, costing money. Actually, you can join a car club and use a car when you need it for particular trips. This is a more efficient and effective way of accessing vehicle ownership and, of course, if you don’t own one yourself you are more inclined to walk and cycle and use other modes of transport to get around.” Since the start of the Mini-Holland programme, air quality has improved significantly, said Loakes, citing research carried out for the council by the Environmental Research Group based at King’s College London. “In 2007 we had just under 70,000 households in Waltham Forest exposed to illegal levels of NOx emissions,” said Loakes. “By 2017 we had got that down to about 6,500 households. That’s still 6,500 households too many, but that’s a figure that is a lot easier to work with than 70,000, and it’s because we have removed through-traffic from our residential neighbourhoods.” Waltham Forest is implementing four LTNs: Hilltop, Markhouse Series 4, Coppermill area, and the South Leytonstone area, a cross-borough partnership with neighbouring Newham council. The Hilltop and Markhouse schemes were previously rejected at consultation stage. But, following further engagement and amendments, both schemes have now secured local support. “People came back to us and demanded these schemes,” said Loakes. The Low Traffic Neighbourhoods webinar, sponsored by Project Centre and organised by Landor LINKS, can be viewed on the Landor LINKS Live YouTube channel
Low Traffic Neighbourhoods are good for everyone Project Centre’s Chris Harrison stresses the importance of engagement and consultation
city that is good for children is good for everybody, said Chris Harrison, technical director at Project Centre. This belief should be embedded in the mission statement for any Low Traffic Neighbourhood (LTN), Harrison said during the Landor LINKS LTN webinar. “If we can create a city that’s good for children, if we can make a road safe for kids to cycle to school, then actually that would be relatively safe for everybody. If we can make the air quality good for children, and we’re happy with that, then actually it’s good for everybody. So when I look at the design, it should always have that objective. Be clear in your mind about what you’re trying to achieve and why you’re going to achieve it.” The consultation process normally takes eight to 10 months, though this can be shorter if there are local authority health teams and community teams already liaising with local residents. Another way of speeding up the process is to use good mapping software, which can log residents’ concerns. “If you can get a good database of residents in that first survey, you can get out and have individual conversations around their street, and not necessarily do big workshops,” said Harrison. The way councils engage with people about plans for a Low Traffic Neighbourhood is “extremely important”, Harrison stressed. “It is one of the fundamental elements of making sure that the scheme is successful. You need to have an open process that takes people with you on a journey.” Consultations should extend beyond focussing solely on road closures and consider complementary measures, Harrison pointed out. For example, what support will there be for people who live in flats and do not have space to store a bike? And could the scheme incorporate a community garden? “There may be small bits of land that can be improved to make it feel better for people in the area. I’ve found that people can get very excited about these changes,” he said. Improvements to the look and feel of an area could even win over drivers whose journeys might “be a couple of minutes longer” as a result of modal filters. “They will get the benefits and see how the area is better for children and somewhere to sit and socialise. So you’re not just solving the traffic issues – you’re going into an area to make improvements across the board.” Harrison urged those planning Low Traffic Neighbourhoods not to do it in a “half-hearted way because some people might be against it”. The key is to design a scheme properly, pay attention to detail and not compromise on quality. “So, make sure you go for quality and go the full scheme,” he concluded.
Motorised traffic is prohibited from using Francis Road in Leyton, Waltham Forest, between 10am and 8pm. The time ban is enforced with a fixed CCTV camera
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LIVERPOOL CITY REGION
Lessons from Liverpool
During lockdown over one-third of people in Liverpool choose to make their journey by bike
Liverpool City Region’s LTN’s encourage a switch to cycling and walking, says Barbara Wade
crucial aspect of any Low Traffic Neighbourhood (LTN) scheme must be a thorough consultation process, believes Barbara Wade, local transport planning manager at Liverpool City Region. She told the Landor LINKS LTN webinar’s audience: “Although we are at the beginning of our process I feel that consultation and engagement with local communities should lead us. Then you can bring the communities with you and, hopefully, deliver that quality environment that people want because they have taken ownership, and they can see how it has developed alongside their aspirations.” The Liverpool City Region combined authority has received £1.9m in Emergency Active Travel Fund (EATF) support from the government and is hoping to get £7.8m in the second tranche. The combined authority is working with its six local authorities – Halton, Knowsley, Liverpool, Sefton, St Helens and Wirral – to roll out temporary measures. This will complement the region’s 10-year Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plan (LCWIP), with £30m committed to a walking and cycling network.
Through the EATF, pop-up cycle lanes are being installed along Liverpool’s major radial corridor across all six local authority areas. “It’s been really welcomed,” said Wade. “Obviously, there are some people who don’t like the idea, but that’s the measure of the ambition that we have in Liverpool City Region.” The combined authority plans to build on the findings of the region’s Bike Life report, produced with the walking and cycling charity Sustrans, said Wade. The LCWIP has identified 31 walking and cycling corridors. She said: “We are at the beginning of our journey and so far we have two routes in detailed design.” Wade explained: “We have carried out the first stage of consultation and engagement with residents, and we are hoping we can use the feedback to enhance the schemes and make them more appropriate for their locations, so they will include measures to reduce traffic in and through local centres. We will use temporary measures and, where we feel it is appropriate, some local authorities will build more permanent structures and measures as part of that process. It’s a learning curve for us.” The EATF tranche 2 proposals are more “ambitious”, featuring more cycle lanes, speed restrictions and road closures, “particularly around some of our district centres and local centres where we think it will be important to encourage people back into those centres to get economic activity back up and running”. Travel patterns in the region changed significantly during lockdown, Wade said. An online tracker survey carried out by Liverpool City Region revealed that, in May 2020, 35% of those that had made a journey had travelled by bike while 65% had walked for more than 15 minutes. A second survey in June 2020 found the numbers using active travel had fallen, with 19% cycling and 23% walking for more than 15 minutes. “The tracker survey was not statistically robust but when compared to our bike life report, which is statistically robust, some of the percentages and direction of travel is very similar,” she said. Over one-third of people were choosing to make their journey by bike and two-thirds had increased their walking to a 15 minutes plus. Those sorts of increases are very significant. During lockdown people started to appreciate their local environment more, staying local for their shopping, staying local for their exercise and also appreciating the quiet that came with a significant reduction in road traffic.” Liverpool City Region is currently working in partnership with cycling and walking charity Sustrans to develop School Streets, with eight pilot ‘School Neighbourhood’ schemes so far taking place. “These pilots have been really successful and we will be watching with interest how they will develop when the children go back in September.”
Liverpool’s School Neighbourhoods take shape The walking and cycling charity Sustrans is working with four schools in the West Derby area of Liverpool to create School Streets. The project started with workshops and activities to help identify the main problems that families, teachers and local residents face during the school run. The pupils then worked with Sustrans’ urban designers to explore how to redesign streets. “The projects will be more involved than the simple school streets concept,” said Paul Morrison, Sustrans’ head of delivery for North of England. “The programme we’re running is called ‘School Neighbourhoods’. We have a schedule of activities throughout the year where we work with the school on behaviour change initiatives, but also
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complement those behaviour change initiatives with street designs outside the school.” He said: “We know from experience that programmes that combine both behaviour change and infrastructure improvement have a considerable uplift in the numbers of people walking in cycling.” Morrison hopes that once the School Neighbourhoods are implemented, other schools across the region will want schemes too. “It’s about face-to-face engagement, being very transparent about the process and making sure that people are on board and brought along every step of the way. Proper ownership of projects mitigates the risk of complete rejection later on.”
Sustrans said that ample time will be given to refine the School Neighbourhood plans. “This is much more of a deliberative process,” said Morrison. “We can deliver the scheme when the community is ready, when we have enough information, and when we know they’re ready to go. “And that’s not the end; communities can still feed into that and help tweak designs and check that they do work. For example, a modal filter at one end of the road might not quite make sense to them anymore, and should be the other end. “So the whole premise behind this is we listened and we created. And we can say to the community: this is your design. This is all about you. It’s not all about systems, and it’s not all about the authority. It’s creating a space that they can understand and works.”
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This year, preparations for the new academic year pose additional challenges for every university Majid Khan
The learning curve Sustainability is the target, but collaboration is the key when managing campus parking, writes Majid Khan
niversity estate management teams need to capitalise on the spirit of collaboration as the challenges posed by the current health crisis and ever more ambitious sustainability targets add to the pressure on parking facilities and the transport infrastructure. Co-operation and collaboration lie at the very heart of estates management within the Higher Education sector. As major employers with large campuses and very high visitor numbers, every university – whether city centre or out of town – has a major influence on its surroundings. Corporate social responsibilities are, therefore, taken very seriously as it is not in the interests of anyone for such centres of education to operate in isolation or without consideration to neighbouring organisations and communities. This is particularly significant in the area of parking and transport management, given the importance of public transport connections and seemingly insurmountable pressures on limited parking facilities. A national health crisis has simply reinforced this collaborative spirit. Here at the University of Leeds, for example, many members of staff have been working from home during the national lockdown so we immediately provided as much free parking as possible for NHS staff working in the neighbouring Leeds General Infirmary. Moreover, the significant impact of a pandemic on societal behaviour has undoubtedly added further impetus to the sustainability agenda and increased the importance of a collective resolve to improve the way we live and work as we look towards a ‘new normal’.
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The challenges in finding the right balance in parking provision for staff and visitors – and, in some cases, students – is nothing new for the estates management team at any university. However, the issues continue to intensify and, despite new technologies and service options, operational complexity and budgetary pressures are never far away. But, just as the benefits of a collaborative mindset can help deliver positive outcomes for local communities, it also helps to foster a cooperative culture where different universities can learn from the experiences of each other to fulfil broader service transformation goals. Every university has its own unique character, with site-specific physical constraints, legacy infrastructure or planning restrictions to contend with, over and above the core educational mission. Sharing experiences and concerns, though, and having access to definitive guidance and advice on legislative do’s and don’ts, and evolving technologies is invaluable. After all, few of us can have professional expertise in areas such as parking and transport management on the one hand and structural or electrical engineering on the other. It is for this reason that the International Parking Community (IPC) created a dedicated group for universities and other major centres of education to share their operational challenges, obtain clarity for new initiatives and glean insight into the myriad parking solutions that might be available. Meeting three times a year, the IPC’s Higher Education Special Interest Group is a pro-active forum that reflects and reinforces the collaborative spirit of the university sector and builds on the industry association’s commitment to deliver definitive advice and encourage the principles of ‘Best Practice’. It helps universities to find the most effective solution for even the most complex parking conundrum, covering all areas from parking charges, permit qualification criteria, enforcement and Blue Badge parking to transport subsidies, car-sharing programmes and significant legislative changes such as the new Parking (Code of Practice) Act 2019.
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CAMPUS PARKING Sustainability is the new mantra Without doubt, one of the most discussed topics at recent meetings relates to the issues associated with the move away from conventional ‘green travel plans’ to a far more holistic and extensive sustainability agenda. Such far-reaching initiatives are laudable and wholly in tandem with pervading political and societal objectives, but the consequences for universities are considerable. Of particular concern is the funding, provision, monitoring and management of electric vehicle (EV) charging points and the inevitable knockon impact on existing parking policies and facilities. Leeds has been highlighted in a national report as one of the many urban areas with serious air quality issues, so the city council has confirmed its drive to become carbon neutral by 2030. In recognition of its prominence as an employer and the scale of its operations in the centre of the city – as well as its global outreach – the University of Leeds has launched seven ‘Climate Principles’ with a view to securing a net zero carbon footprint by 2030 and having no direct carbon emissions by 2050. That means sustainability is right at the top of our ‘to do’ list and has huge implications in all areas of estates management – not least on the huge number of development projects planned for the campus. This year, preparations for the new academic year pose additional challenges for every university. Assessing the feasibility of social distancing, the introduction of one-way corridors, new hand sanitisation points and new signage for over 400 buildings on the campus here at the University of Leeds has certainly been a huge undertaking. The implications of a likely increase in remote working will also have a knock-on effect on the day-to-day workings of the university and the anticipated occupancy of different areas of the campus. But, new car park arrangements, reassessment of the parking permit management system to provide a more needs-based qualification and giving greater prioritisation to hybrid and EVs have also been prompted by the pandemic. So too has the need to plan for wider use of electric scooters and the potential to incentivise and increase the use of electric bikes by staff and students alike. It is as if someone has pressed sustainability’s Fast Forward button! Five years ago, in the wake of the government’s Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) grants to encourage the take-up of EVs, we introduced four dual charging points on the campus for use by staff. Although we only received five applications at that time, the writing was certainly on the wall. Indeed, the use of electric and hybrid vehicles is continuing to increase exponentially so we have increased the number of charging points to meet the rising demand and are now looking at plans to allocate a full floor of our multi-storey car park for EV users.
Leading by example We are also leading by example and all estates vehicles are now electric. That all sounds all well and good but, as many of my counterparts at other universities have also experienced, it is not a simple exercise as there are a multitude of factors to consider: • How does a university fund the ongoing installation of charging points? • What needs to be done to increase the rating of the power infrastructure?
EV charging point at the University of Leeds
University of Leeds’ multi-storey • What type of charging points should be specified, where are the best locations for installing them and how can the potential demand be estimated and tracked? • What tariffs should be applied to incentivise the use of electric vehicles while deterring the mis-use of a designated space once a vehicle has been charged? • How can use of electric vehicle charging points be optimised and what is the best way to manage their demand? • What data can be obtained during the charging process to help refine parking management policies and ensure the most efficient use of charging points? • What is the best way to ensure the fair use of campus-based chargepoints and to ensure awareness of alternative public charging infrastructure and encourage home-based charging? • How can additional waiting bays be created or allocated for charged vehicles so as to free up the charging points for other users? • What technologies are available to support such an EV infrastructure and what are the best ways to adjust enforcement measures to take account of the changing composition of parking activities without compromising campus accessibility for staff and visitors? The list goes on… and on!
Shared learning These are precisely the type of questions where universities can learn from each other and benefit from the expertise and insight of a progressive industry body. Certainly, the IPC Higher Education Special Interest Group has acted as a catalyst for familiarisation visits to other universities, acted as a source of useful industry contacts and for developing innovative responses to specific campus issues. It is also providing a dynamic discussion forum that truly harnesses the inherent spirit of collaboration within the university sector. Indirectly, the forum is also helping to fuel wider co-operation with local authorities and other primary service centres. The immense pressures on finite parking at and around any hospital, for example, is a major issue for staff, patients and visitors alike and, doubtless, the forthcoming mandate to provide Blue Badge and staff parking at hospitals will create further pressure points. Through open discussion with other IPC members we are learning from each other and inspiring a range of new initiatives and arrangements that were previously not even on the radar. This is very much in keeping with our overriding aim to not only to make our own transition to a low carbon future, but also to harness our expertise to support others and to mobilise the University’s combined knowledge, influence, assets and community to tackle this global challenge. Of course, our top priority remains our own staff, but where there’s a will, there’s invariably a way. Majid Khan is support services manager at the University of Leeds and chair of the International Parking Community’s Higher Education Group
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Taking pride in a green design The University of Brighton has created an environmentally-sensitive multi-storey
he Watts House car park at the University of Brighton provides parking for staff, students and visitors. The new multi-storey parking facility forms a key element of the University’s transformational Big Build project on Moulsecoomb campus, consolidating existing surface parking and freeing up space for new academic, social and residential student facilities. The multi-storey, which won the Best New Car Park trophy at the British Parking Awards 2020, provides 550-spaces and also houses cycle storage facilities, shower and changing facilities within the car park building. There is also a separate area specifically for motorcycle parking on ground level. The Watts House car park was designed by Stripe Consulting and built by Kier Construction. The multi-storey has a façade that mixes metal and planting. The Berry Systems’ façade has perforated, lasercut metal panels with a powder coated finish. A living wall is also being cultivated in order to soften the car park’s appearance in the context of the nearby Site of Nature Conservation Interest. A high-tensile cable system allows climbing plants to ‘green’ the green coloured building. Carefully selected plants have been installed on the top deck via suspended planting boxes with a bespoke irrigation system also designed and installed. Rainwater harvesting has been installed to provide a supply of water to irrigate the green wall planting, negating the need to use fresh water, and reducing the energy required to run the car park. The primary structure is formed from a steel frame, designed to achieve maximum efficiency in terms of tonnage whilst adhering to all required standards. It has a composite deck structure comprising in-situ poured concrete onto a permanent metal framework tray. The deck was then waterproofed with a deck coating. The circulation of the car park is achieved by adopting a Vertical Circulation Module (VCM). The spaces themselves measure 2.4m x 4.8m on the basis the users will be fairly ‘long stay users’ and also in an attempt to deliver maximum efficiency within the building, with disabled spaces
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measuring 3.6m x 6.0m. The design is fully clear-span so that the spaces can be re-sized or re-apportioned in the future as demand or requirement dictates. The surface of the car park was treated by Mike Thelwell Flooring with a coloured resin deck coating from Deckmaster, with an epoxy system used for lining and road marking. Each level is colour coded, providing a clear distinction between levels to ease wayfinding. The spaces have been marked in a ‘parking pad’ design. This has been adopted in order to promote ‘neat parking’ and also negate the requirement to re-apply white lining to the parking bays on a regular basis. The colours identifying the levels, shown on the pads and the cores, are designed to correspond to the Pride flag. Lighting is provided by LED luminaires throughout the car park that have wireless control that incorporate solar, movement and timed sensors. The general lighting control concept was to prevent the luminaires being on during daylight hours as well as when no movement was detected within the car park and ancillary areas in order to minimise energy consumption. The multi-storey car park has been provided with CCTV and car access control systems for safety and security. The CCTV system comprises static and pan-tilt-zoom (PTZ) cameras linked to a central controller that has recording and remote access facilities. The car park’s permit scheme is run by the University of Brighton and is based on a permit scheme linked to the ANPR system. An ANPR system has been installed to track any unauthorised users or abuse of the car park. The University of Brighton’s vice chancellor Debra Humphris said: “We’re delighted with the quality and functionality of our new parking facility. As well as providing a high-quality solution for our staff and students who need to drive to the campus, the extensive secure cycle parking and facilities, alongside the PV solar panels and electric vehicle charging points provide us with a solid platform from which to pursue our far-reaching sustainability goals. We’re particularly proud of the ‘living wall’ fed by a rainwater harvesting tank which will, in time, help the parking facility to blend into the local landscape and particularly the Watts Bank, a wild, natural area adjacent to the site.”
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Setting a new course Kirby Corner, Warwick University
arwick is one of the UK’s leading universities, regularly featuring in the top ten of all major domestic rankings. It is currently working on its five-year plan to develop its campus and facilities, with a target of growing its student population by as much as 40% by 2030. The university is thus upgrading its transport systems and, in particular, improving parking facilities and parking management across the campus. A key project was building a multi-storey at Kirby Corner. The car park was designed and built by Goldbeck Construction. The structure was designed by Goldbeck’s in-house team using Autodesk REVIT software. The 5-level structure provides 1,100 spaces, while the adjacent new surface car park adds another 200. The steel-frame structure’s façade consists of aluminium panels fixed to the steel sub-frame in five alternative thicknesses and colours. These gradually become lighter higher up the structure in order to soften its profile against the surrounding environment. The façade extends approximately four metres above the top level in order to mitigate jump risk. Fully cladded staircases and gabion baskets at ground level round off the structure’s appearance. Coloured walkways within the multi-storey car park structure ensure pedestrians can safely navigate the interior. The levels are colour coded to ensure vehicles can easily be found. The site also includes an automatic number plate recognition
A woodland wonder
Jubilee car park, University of Sussex
he University of Sussex is located in Falmer on England’s south coast. Its campus is surrounded by the South Downs National Park near Brighton. The university, which received its Royal Charter in August 1961, is the first of the ‘Plate Glass University’ generation and a founding member of the 1994 Group of research-intensive universities. The campus was designed by Scottish architect Sir Basil Spence,
system as well as bay counting technology. The car park features 10 double charging points that can serve up to 20 electric vehicles. There is capacity to add an additional lift should the need arise. The university has also tackled congestion caused by drivers seeking available parking spaces, especially during peak times. The university engaged technology company SWARCO to devise a parking management system. As the campus has around 27 car parks, SWARCO identified that a lack of parking spaces was not the problem – the challenge was helping drivers identify where parking was available and signposting where spaces were vacant. SWARCO recommended the creation of a dynamic parking guidance system. Message signs installed across the campus now display clear space availability arrows and feature the number of available spaces in green or display ‘Full’ in red. This enables drivers to clearly see whether spaces in a particular car park are available or not from a distance and take an appropriate course of action. The signs are complemented by full-colour variable message signs (VMS) that can be utilised to display any image or text. The VMS can provide parking and traffic flow information, campus safety announcements and be used to tell drivers and visitors about events, maintenance works or road closures. Occupancy data is sent to the signs by a series of car park counters and inductive loops that record all vehicles entering and exiting each car park. This means the data and status of the car parks are always up-to-date, enabling the university to manage parking availability. The campus is managed using SWARCO’s Zephyr web-based user interface, which enables users to edit message and pictogram displays, as well as upload new text and graphics when required.
best known for his work on Coventry Cathedral. Largely built during the 1960s, the campus’s architecture is highly regarded, its buildings winning numerous awards including a medal from the Royal Institute of British Architects and a Civic Trust award. The high quality of the existing buildings, and the South Downs setting, meant that when the university set out to build a new car park it wanted a building that had architectural merit and was also environmentally sensitive. The Jubilee multi-storey car park, designed and built by Goldbeck Construction, provides 340 parking spaces over eight split-levels, as well as a parking area for up to eight motorcycles and nine charging points for electric vehicles. The building’s exterior features a façade that comprises aluminium panels interspersed with portholes to allow natural light and ventilation to reach each level of the car park. The car park sits next to woodland, so extensive planting has been carried out around, behind and within the structure. Over 60 trees have been planted around its perimeter and in two atriums in the middle of the parking lot. In addition, the boundary path that runs behind the new parking lot has been moved closer to the forest and is now more accessible for hikers and runners. Each floor has been allocated its own colour to make it easier for drivers to find their parked vehicle. Cameras are installed on each floor of the parking garage to increase user safety. In addition to video surveillance, there are refuge points and emergency telephones on every level. Fire alarm systems with acoustic and optical alarms are also installed.
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F U T U R E
P R O O F
CAR PARKING F O R
T H E
C H A N G I N G
U R B A N
L A N D S C A P E S
Talk to the Car Park Design Advisory Service from Berry Systems for expert advice on all aspects of car park design and construction
C A L L
01902 491100 W W W . B E R R Y S Y S T E M S . C O . U K S A L E S @ B E R R Y S Y S T E M S . C O . U K
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CAR PARK DESIGN
The view from the driving seat The global pandemic has had a profound effect on how we travel, which means the way we design and build car parks has to change, says Berry Systems’ Steve Dunn
o say that these are uncertain times is a huge understatement. COVID-19 has had a devastating impact on our world and the effects have been felt by every one of us – both personally and professionally – in one way or another. These shockwaves will be felt for many years to come and we should be prepared to face a decade of change in many aspects of our daily lives. Changes already underway in our city and town centre planning will accelerate to meet new demands. Improvements need to be made to protect the environment and our safety must never be taken for granted. We are witnessing the transformation of urban streets to create more space for cycling and walking, and growing concerns about the future of urban centres as places to work and shop. These trends will have a profound effect on the operation of existing car parks, and significant implications for the design and construction of new ones.
coming rise in electric vehicle use. Adding a few token chargers now will not cater for future requirements and this needs to be factored in to plans. Technology moves at a rapid rate. The innovative, environmentally friendly products that are currently being developed at Berry Systems will be in common use in a few years, enabling buildings to utilise integrated solar power systems to provide clean energy to charge electric vehicles.
Building on experience
With almost half a century of experience in building car park environments, Berry Systems has seen lots of change over the years. To help our clients make sense of a world that is changing dramatically, Berry Systems has launched the Car Park Design Advisory Service (CP-DAS) to provide expert advice, guidance and information to architects, developers and planners, to ensure that their projects are Changing landscape future-proof and equipped to manage the changes that are coming. During lockdown, the highways CP-DAS harnesses Berry Systems’ and byways have been practically Change is inevitable, but by learning collective knowledge and puts the empty and town centres deserted. company in the driving seat when As restrictions are eased and more the lessons of the past and by being it comes to being able to assess the and more people start to go back clever, change should be for the better market and to evaluate the direction to work, the roads will soon return in which it is going. to normal. Steve Dunn Involving experts such as Berry However, the same cannot be System’s CP-DAS early on in a prosaid for our high streets. Town ject means they can help model centre shopping has been on the clients’ current requirements and decline for many years now. An guide them on future-proofing the increase in online ordering and infrastructure for changing demands. CP-DAS can also advise out-of-town retail outlets has seen more and more shops close for clients on technological advances and how they can be incorporated business and the lockdown has put another nail in the coffin. into projects, ensuring the facilities they build today are prepared A careful balance will have to be struck by town planners for the to provide the solutions for tomorrow. future. Without the requirement for so many shops in our town centres, buildings will need to be re-purposed. It is likely that more Safety first of these will be used for urban living and non-retail, leading to a change in traffic requirement and more flexible parking facilities. One thing that definitely will not change in the future is that safety Detailed consideration has to be given to how these buildings will will always be the most important factor of any development and be used, in both the short-term and long-term, and initial designs has been at the heart what Berry Systems has done over the past will need to reflect this. Future-proofing projects right from the 50 years. Safety standards for both vehicles and pedestrians are start will ensure that the buildings constructed now are flexible constantly being updated and refined. enough to offer solutions to issues that may arise in years to come. As a company we monitor these carefully to ensure all regulations are met and to help predict future changes. Berry Systems works Environmentally friendly parking to meet, and surpass, Health & Safety specifications. CP-DAS will ensure that clients benefit from the same exact standards in One positive that the parking sector can take from the pandemic is meeting appropriate legislation. the effect that the lockdown has had on the environment. We have CP-DAS’s surveying service provides both precise and compreall seen the footage of cleaner seas and clearer skies – we need to hensive reporting, detailing all recommendations and costings. learn lessons from this. Berry Systems’ in-house testing facilities ensure all products and The number of cars on our roads has risen by 49% over the last projects meet the most stringent standards of compliance. 25 years, to approximately 32.5 million. Predictions estimate that Change is inevitable, but by learning the lessons of the past and if growth continues at the same pace, we could have 46.9 million by being clever about how we approach the future, change should cars on British roads by 2043. However, the UK government is be for the better. taking strong steps to counter the effect this rise will have on the environment, with plans to ban the selling of new petrol, diesel or hybrid cars from 2035 at the latest. Steve Dunn is managing director Berry Systems It is vital that the car parking facilities we build today reflect the www.berrysystems.co.uk
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CAR PARK DESIGN The Watts House car park at the University of Brighton features a green wall. Berry Systems’ perforated cladding system provides a practical functionality. Watts House was voted Best New Car Park at the British Parking Awards 2020
Berry Systems creates sustainable cladding and façades, says Steve Dunn
hether it is a car park, commercial building, block of flats or an office complex, the changing urban landscape and tighter planning restrictions now require architects to get more creative with the look of their projects while satisfying environmental standards. The exterior aesthetic is a key consideration in the planning process of any building. Berry Systems offers an extensive range of cladding and façade options that not only provide planners with myriad choices to create bespoke appearance but also provide sustainable solutions. Expanded mesh suits a variety of different styles and visual requirements and due to the stretching/expanding manufacturing process, can be produced with limited to zero waste. When recycling aluminium cladding, it has an energy saving of 95% of that required through the primary smelter production route. Environmental impact is also major factor in the plans for any building. Whether it is ensuring that the finish complements the surrounding landscape, is manufactured using sustainable products or can actively benefit the building itself, Berry Systems has solutions for all requirements. An increasingly popular option for architects are green walls. Living façades can be utilised in various configurations to support climbing or scrambling plants. This is a practical method of giving a building a more natural appearance while helping to purify the air and lower ambient temperature inside the building, reducing the need for air conditioning. Composite timber cladding is another environmentally-friendly choice. Not only does it create a highly attractive finish but is made from reconstituted timber and recycled high-density polyethylene. Another green option is Sto Glass. Made from 96% recycled glass, the lightweight Sto Glass rainscreen cladding system can also be finished with solar photovoltaic cells, enabling them to contribute renewable energy to the building.
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Depending on the size of the perforation and pattern the amount of natural light in the car park can be managed Berry Systems Involving expert suppliers such as Berry Systems early in the planning process, means they can advise on all of the options available. For example, Berry Systems is happy to send samples of the different types of cladding available so customers can see the quality for themselves. To find out more about cladding and façades from Berry Systems or to ask for samples, call 01902 491100 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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CAR PARK DESIGN Architects no longer view car parks as just a functional necessity. Many are fully expressing their creative skills to turn multistorey car parks into aesthetically interesting and artistically acclaimed structures, as can be seen in Berry Systemsâ€™ work at the Eastside car park in Birmingham
The exterior cladding of Banbury Station car park in Oxfordshire was designed by Berry Systems to help the building blend into its locale. The car parkâ€™s impact was reduced by the use of Sto Glass panels for the exterior cladding. Residential properties opposite the car park are reflected on the walls of the four-storey structure
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Government owned car parks could hold the key to providing 110,000 new homes, writes Oliver Knight
Making space for housing ust over 240,000 net additional dwellings were added to housing stock in England in 2018/19, 20% below the government’s stated 300,000 per annum housing target. Freeing up underutilised public-sector-owned land in the right locations could hold the key to boosting future housing delivery numbers. A good place to start could be looking at the extensive amount of potential development land tied up across England’s car parks, according to the results of a study by Knight Frank’s Geospatial team, conducted on behalf of the Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG). In total, the study identified 103,000 public and private surface car parks across the country, which comprises a land area of 20,000 hectares. Of this, some 7,555 hectares are owned by the public sector. Our estimates suggest that this alone could yield 2.1 million homes, or seven years’ supply of housing at the Home of 2030, a UK government competition, has encouraged government’s stated 300,000 homes per annum target. architects to design environmentally-friendly homes that will support Of course, not all of these are suitable for development, and people in leading independent, fulfilling lives as society ages. many provide essential support to associated retail centres. Six concepts were shortlisted for further development by the However, as Ian McGuinness, head of geospatial at Knight Frank MHCLG, including Outpost Architects (above) which has developed and author of the study notes, by mapping the precise location Janus, a home constructed from 98% organic biomass material, and extent of every surface car park in England in public primarily timber and straw. The winning entry will be selected by an ownership, it is clear that there are redundancies in provision as expert panel. well as opportunities for re-use. We can now say, for example, that 91% of public sector surface car parks actually have another such car park within a 5-minute • In Greater Manchester and adjoining areas there are 144 car walk. That 21% offer parking for a primary retail centre, 13% parks that could be turned into 4,687 homes only offer provision for secondary retail, and that the remaining • In the West Midlands 79 car parks could make way for 3,732 66% do not appear to support any retail centre whatsoever. homes Crucially, this means that there is scope to release land for new • In south Hampshire 152 car parks for 3,239 homes homes, whilst maintaining car parking services which are vital to • In Bristol 78 car parks for 2,289 homes. support our high streets. Taking this into account, and selecting just 15% of public secIn London, despite extensive rail connectivity, 40% of the city’s tor-owned car parks best situated for housing (in areas with surface car parking is held by the public sector, and 270 hectares already high public transport connectivity), Knight Frank has of that is in areas with existing public transport connectivity of identified the potential to deliver PTAL Level 3 or above (PTAL is a more than 110,000 new homes. measure of transport accessibility, Ian McGuinness says: “The figures the higher the score, the better the shine a light on the sheer scale of connectivity). opportunity to deliver much needed Delivering housing on the country’s Public sector-owned car parks could housing on government-owned land underused car parks also has the raise a potential £6 billion in land and come as many local authorities potential to drive environmental and face increasing pressure to meet social benefits. As Ian McGuinness sales for HM Treasury ambitious housing targets. On top says: “Some 76% of respondents to Oliver Knight of helping to boost new supply, this the National Travel Attitudes Survey approach would raise important revagree we should reduce car use for enue for the Treasury. We estimate the sake of the environment, whilst that the sale of these sites could the pace of development of raise £6 billion in land sales, at a autonomous vehicles means we time when public finances are likely to come under greater should already be thinking about the scale, location and utility of scrutiny and pressure.” space currently tied up with privately owned vehicles. One There are suggestions that the government recognises the ReThinkX study estimates personal car ownership could drop as opportunity. The MHCLG has announced that it planned to look much as 80% over as little as 15 years.” at how the land it owns can be used more effectively, including The opportunity for developers more broadly is also significant; assessing if it could be released and put to better use, including 65,000 car parks identified through this research fall under for home building. For example, the study found: private ownership, providing opportunities up and down the country to bring forward suitable sites for housing and other • Two urban councils in England have more than half of their uses. Stuart Baillie, head of planning at Knight Frank, adds: surface car park provision tied up in public sector ownership. “Delivering housing on the country’s underused car parks will One central government department has surface car parking also drive environmental and social benefits. Given the need for equivalent to 200 football pitches. housing and the pressure on our green spaces and conservation • In the Greater London area (including adjoining built-up areas assets, looking at how we can make use of ‘brownfield’ and such as Watford), 759 car parks could be turned into 14,915 underutilised land is vital.” homes.
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The author Oliver Knight is a partner in Knight Frank’s residential research department, specialising in UK-wide development research. He is responsible for analysing and reporting on trends in the residential development, land and new homes markets across the UK, as well as within the build-to-rent, student housing and senior living sectors. He also contributes to Knight Frank’s housing market forecasts and regularly presents Knight Frank’s market views to clients including developers, property companies, investors and lenders. www.knightfrank.co.uk
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Solutionlabs gears up for the future Parking technology specialist to unveil payment and data integration services
olutionlabs is a company that develops systems and services for the parking sector. Over the past six years it has launched a number of back office and customer-facing technologies that enable car park operators to tap into business information and which also offer drivers easy methods to book and pay for their parking stays. Established Solutionlabs brands include services such as GoANPR, PayMyPCN and Tap2Park. “When Solutionlabs started in 2014 we wanted to offer the highest standard of notice processing and recovery, which freed the parking operator to concentrate on winning larger contracts and growing their business without the everyday burdens such as administrative costs and staffing requirements,” says Duane Hodges-Stubbs, Solutionlabs’ cofounder and technical director. “Over the past six years we have been able to carefully observe the industry and where possible push for change. The very nature of our company set-up means we can garner a unique perspective from our high-traction, high-volume brands and collate the consumer data. This has led us to a new era of software development. Our original vision is still very much alive today as we continue to grow. The company has evolved at pace in the past two years. We have expanded our team and made great strides in areas such as consolidated payment platforms, data management and predictive modelling.” The company is set to launch a new range of services that complement the existing brands. The new products include input360 and notanotherapp, which will be known as naa. “Using our combined experience and raw data, we have designed new platforms to empower our customers and unlock not only theirs, but also the entire industry’s growth potential through innovation,” says HodgesStubbs. “Our vision for the next 10 years is to continue to grow our staple brands such as GoANPR, PayMyPCN and StartInParking, whilst also venturing into greater data structured software solutions with our new three-tier brand system Tap2Park, notanotherapp (naa) and input360. TaP2Park been established for over 12 months and continues to draw in thousands of new users each and every month.”
New platforms The new naa and input360 services will be available from Autumn 2020 and Summer 2021 respectively. “We believe both solutions form a part of the next evolutionary step in parking today and will facilitate a huge leap in innovation for not only transport and parking, but wider industry applications also. By now people are familiar with what Tap2Park is and what it does, but our latest two software solutions will seek to ‘wake-up’ the industry and highlight what we believe to be antiquated and restrictive standards that have gone unchecked for too long,” says Hodges-Stubbs.
Duane Hodges-Stubbs “The naa platform has been designed to deliver transparency and give back the flexibility that modern payment solutions were originally intended for,” he says. “We believe that, before long, our naa system will overwhelm and ultimately redefine what is considered ‘acceptable process’ when delivering modern, cashless payment solutions throughout our industry. With a dedication to our new evolution initiative we aim to make the naa system as future-proof as possible.” The collection and analysis of data is becoming central to parking management, and to the destinations car parks serve, he says. “Data is the key to survival in this industry. Collecting the right data is more important than ever, with ever growing big data tools becoming available we can analyse vast amounts of data, that even a few years ago was unimaginable. “Our summer ‘21 product launch, input360, is at its core a data management and predictive modelling tool that will look for trends, predict customer traffic for revenue planning and also see how the environmental impact of the location is changing over time, CO2 levels, fuel types and so on. The input360 model harnesses some of the most valuable data available today, including multi-channel payment and tariff data from across all payment platforms, including pay & display.”
Expanding the client base Up until now, Solutionlabs has focussed on working with private sector clients. Besides software solutions, the company has also developed support services such as Regent Parking and StartInParking, a programme that guides new market entrants from start-up to stand-alone parking operator. “Our evolution means that we offer the complete circle of parking services, which in turn means a typical client is becoming harder to define,” he says. “We have start-up operators to well-known larger, high-volume operators looking for bespoke ANPR or payment solutions.
I would say Solutionlabs clients are anyone who understands the power and value of great data. Someone who has a desire to move forward with innovation and not let it pass them by.” The new range of services will see the company work with the public parking sector. “We are immensely proud of the customers we work with from both high-volume private organisations to our start-up partnerships,” he says. “However, we were initially reluctant to step into the public sector until the time and our software was right. Too often you see companies emerge into the sector with inferior products, inferior development and less than wholesome commercial intentions. Some have ultimately succeeded, but we feel this has been at the cost of evolution and innovation. “Our three-tier system is designed to solve problems that empower growth and innovation whilst also being affordable to not only local authorities, but also hospitals, universities, airports, as well as private operators.”
Greener parking Solutionlabs systems already integrate with a wide range of payment technologies and back office systems. A logical next step sees it looking to work with electric vehicle (EV) charging system suppliers and shared mobility service operators who offer car clubs and bike hire. “Our GoANPR brand software features ‘GoANPR Stream’ that monitors and alerts on non-electric vehicles using the EV bay, which is a common frustration. We are rolling it out nationwide with EV enforcement partners – ‘green enforcement’ as we say. As part of our new evolution initiative we are constantly looking at new ways to support industry growth, and there is no doubt green energy is rightly high on everybody’s agenda,” concludes Hodges-Stubbs. “In a post-COVID world we have all had to look at where we are. Are we stuck in the same place or are we moving forward? Solutionlabs wants to facilitate the next steps in innovation for our industry. Parking must evolve. Parking is evolving.”
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East Suffolk makes switch to Taranto WSP know-how enables council to introduce back office system in midst of pandemic
ast Suffolk Council found itself upgrading the software it uses to manage the enforcement of parking in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic. Social distancing rules meant that the council’s new software provider, WSP, had to provide remote support. The introduction of both the software and a new approach to parking went smoothly, reflecting the detailed preparations that had been put in place. East Suffolk Council is a new local authority formed by the merger of the Suffolk Coastal and Waveney districts in 2019. Suffolk County Council has delegated ‘functions’ to East Suffolk, enabling it to administer civil parking enforcement in towns like Aldeburgh, Beccles, Bungay, Felixstowe, Framlingham, Lowestoft and Southwold. East Suffolk recognised that it needed new software to run the combined parking enforcement operation, so it carried out a market review using an existing framework. The council’s parking services manager, Lewis Boudville, said: “ESPO Framework 509 appeared to be the most expedient and convenient way to select a system provider for our new civil parking enforcement operation. All of the companies listed were invited in to demonstrate their respective products, many of them came to see us, and it was WSP’s Taranto system that best met our requirements.” After being recorded on the street by civil enforcement officers, penalty charge notices (PCNs) are instantaneously sent into a back office system, that integrates with the DVLA databases that enable the local authority to access personal details associated with vehicle registration. Taranto automatically progresses the PCN through the correct legislative path, sending out the relevant statutory notices, keeping track of changes in the level of debt. The Taranto system also manages ad-hoc correspondence and features integrated payment channels to allow the debt to be cleared. If a debt is not cleared, the system exchanges data with third-party enforcement agents to assist with recovering the money owing.
Drivers issued with a PCN can review the evidence, pay or appeal via a Taranto portal The parking team liked the fact Taranto had already been extensively tested in the market, with other local authorities using it for enforcement. Other councils and government bodies use Taranto to issue and process more than 8 million PCNs a year. “This was important to us,” said Boudville. “We were setting up a brand new capability and wouldn’t have felt comfortable developing and providing unproven software. In addition, we liked how Taranto’s use of open APIs (application programming interfaces) allowed us to work with other suppliers.”
Developing a relationship East Suffolk Council awarded the contract directly to WSP, meaning its officers were able to work closely with the technology company’s development team. “The direct award was a testament to the capabilities of the software, and to the trust Lewis and his colleagues have placed in us,” said Joel Hughes, business development executive with WSP. “We put lot of emphasis on building relationships with our clients, and that’s
Up and running
A proven solution Boudville was keen to know not just what the software could do, but what was involved in getting the system up and running. “Throughout the interview process with suppliers, we were trying to understand what the system implementation process would be like,” he said. “Experience told me this was often very different from product to product. We took comfort from how WSP laid out the stages clearly. We also knew authorities that had moved successfully from legacy systems to Taranto.”
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something I find rewarding personally as well as professionally.” The relationship between council and contractor was tested when an unexpected problem struck – COVID-19. The new parking enforcement system had ‘go-live’ set for March 2020, but the council decided to delay the launch and to issue warning notices instead of PCNs for three weeks due to the exceptional circumstances. WSP helped East Suffolk adjust the system to allow for the softer launch. “For all possible contraventions we ensured there was a warning notice code in the system as well as a standard penalty notice code,” said Antony Small, programme manager at WSP. “We also made sure details of key workers’ vehicles that the council wanted to whitelist were flagged, so that officers on the streets would be alerted not to issue key workers with warnings.” To help the council’s back office staff respond to customers who had been issued with warning notices, the WSP team conducted online training. “Normally, the training and technical teams would sit in an office with a customer’s team and help them through the process,” said Small. “COVID19 restrictions meant we had to adapt and support them over the web, using screensharing to talk them through the steps. It was very different for all of us, but still worked well.”
Drivers have been alerted to the changes
Following the three-week period issuing warning notices, East Suffolk Council began using the Taranto software to issue and process PCNs. East Sussex’s Boudville concludes: “Delivering these sorts of projects is never easy and it’s the working relationship that ultimately ensures success. From my perspective it’s always the response of the supplier that’s important. Some will disappear on you, and not help you fix problems. WSP has been there the whole time and made sure there were fixes for any issues we had. That’s the important bit for me.”
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LNER introduces contactless payment ‘COVID Safe’ system supplied by HUB Parking Technology Train operator London North Eastern Railway (LNER) is to introduce a contactless parking system across the East Coast route to enable customers to have a contactless journey experience from door-to-door. Car parks at 10 LNER managed stations will start to use a system of automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) cameras on entry and exit. For the first time, customers can pre-book a parking space via a new LNER Parking app and on the LNER website. The system, which enables contactless card payment and prebooking, is part of the train operator’s ‘COVID Safe’ approach. The new system is designed to give peace of mind to customers, looking to reduce their use of high-contact areas, as they will no longer need to have a physical ticket or use a manual payment machine. Customers exiting the car parks will be able to pay via contactless card, or via the LNER Parking app that will allow customers to leave automatically via the new ANPR technology. The system will be introduced during October, with the new technology and signage being installed in partnership with HUB Parking Technology. Claire Ansley, director of customer experience at LNER, said:
Claire Ansley, director of customer experience at LNER “We are committed to making travel simpler and smarter so this new car parking system combined with our mobile ticket app, will mean that customers can complete their entire journey without the need of a physical ticket or having to use a payment machine. “We also believe this will help give customers greater confidence when they travel by removing contact with equipment often touched by many people.” Lee Burton, managing director
of HUB Parking Technology, said: “As a company, we look to create the best parking facilities available, providing a brilliant and efficient service to customers. We are, therefore, delighted to expand our relationship with LNER and help to introduce a brand new system across the entire route.” Season passholders will be able to use the app to purchase a season pass that, once paid, will allow access through the entries and exits via ANPR. Drop-off and short-stay areas
Barking and Dagenham adopts Videalert The London Borough of Barking and Dagenham has upgraded the network of CCTV cameras it uses to enforce moving traffic contraventions such as weight limits, bus lanes, banned turns and box junctions. Videalert will be installing 46 HD CCTV cameras that operate in unattended mode. Tina Brooks, interim head of parking at Barking and Dagenham, said: “The new system will help us meet our commitment to making our streets safer for road users and pedestrians alike. The five-year contract will see Videalert replace a legacy Siemens attended and unattended CCTV enforcement camera solution. The new platform allows the
council to maintain a whitelist of exempt vehicles including buses, taxis and emergency vehicles to further improve efficiency. Evidence packs will be stored on Videalert’s hosted digital video platform where they can be accessed and reviewed securely over the internet. Validated evidence packs will be sent to the council’s back office system to issue penalty charge notices. Videalert will provide a phased transition in parallel with the introduction of a new back office notice processing system to minimise downtime during the changeover. Videalert will also provide a digital attended enforcement facility that utilises the council’s existing community safety
cameras. The platform will be integrated with mobile enforcement vehicles from third party suppliers, enabling the council to phase the migration from assets that are nearing end-of-life. “We are committed to achieving best value,” Brooks added. “Videalert is providing us with the latest highdefinition cameras that deliver significant cost savings and higher productivity, whilst offering 99% uptime, a considerable improvement over our previous system. “Based on open standards, the Videalert platform provides the flexibility to meet present needs, while enabling us to upgrade to new cameras as they become available in the marketplace.”
will also be controlled by ANPR technology without any barriers. The same range of payment options available through local pay stations, online pre-payment and season pass parking will still be available via the LNER app. The new system follows the introduction of LNER’s car parking offer in August at most LNER managed car parks. Customers can park for £5 a day after 9.30am Monday-Friday or for those having a long weekend, park anytime Friday to Monday for just £12.
LED signs from Carlo Gavazzi Carlo Gavazzi has launched a range of car park displays designed to show numbers, symbols and scrolling text. Available in three sizes – small, medium and large – the installer can program the displays via the built-in webserver. The RGB LED matrix has seven colour options and features adjustable brightness. Each display offers different combinations of digits and symbols and can easily be viewed up to 50 metres. The DISxRSE series of displays has been designed to be suitable for both indoor and outdoors applications. Manufactured in black aluminium and IP54 rated the units also offer an operating temperature range of -30° to +55°C.
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PayByPhone promotes COVID-Secure parking Phone parking provider supplies councils with coronavirus advice signage and leaflets Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, PayByPhone reports a significant increase in the number of councils that have approached it about introducing cashless parking payment procedures. The World Health Organization (WHO) has advised against using cash payments whenever possible to mitigate the risk of transmitting the virus, says Jonny Combe, chief executive of PayByPhone UK. “Providing a cashless option is the morally right thing to do during this pandemic as we can see from the retail and hospitality sectors, who are wholeheartedly advocating cashless payments,” he says. “People must feel comfortable when they venture out, and part of that level of security should be in the form of cashless parking payments. Why would anyone want to handle cash and touch the same machines as other people when they have their own personal solution in their pocket… their phone?” The company has provided 13 new council clients with COVID-19 Response Packs. The packs contain helpful information and signage councils can use to ensure drivers are aware of the new cashless option and that they are able to use the PayByPhone service safely and without fear. Jonny Combe said: “We have had 13 highly responsible councils of all sizes, from Northumberland County
PayByPhone’s new clients Councils signing up with PayByPhone include: • Blaby District Council • Blackpool Council • Bracknell Forest Council • Conwy County Borough Council • Denbighshire County Council • Durham County Council • Dymchurch Parish Council • East Staffordshire Borough Council • Gwynedd Council • Isle of Anglesey County Council • Melton Borough Council • Northumberland County Council • North West Leicestershire District Council
Jonny Combe Council in the north to Dymchurch Parish Council in the south, approach us. They know that, as more people take to their cars, cashless parking is an urgent requirement. Cashless parking will keep their residents, visitors and council employees safe not only by not handling coins and notes, but by reducing the risk of picking up the virus when touching parking machines.” PayByPhone is also reminding drivers that when using phones to pay via contactless or apps, it is important that they clean the device with alcohol-based wipes regularly because phones can pick up germs from
400 chargepoints for Birmingham
Birmingham City Council will be rolling out almost 400 electric vehicle (EV) chargepoints across the city this autumn. ESB EV Solutions will carry out the £2.92m project, which is being funded by the Office of Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV). Over the next two years, an initial network of 394 fast and rapid chargepoints will be installed across Birmingham, focussing on the city centre to support the electrification of Birmingham’s taxi fleet, though they will also be accessible to the general public and local businesses. Initial network development will allow electric taxis, cars and vans to get moving
quickly, picking up a significant charge in less than 30 minutes. The city council anticipates this will enable the expansion of the current chargepoint network and allow for further investment, where a pay-foruse model will be introduced across the network in the coming months following deployment of the first chargers. The council will work with ESB EV Solutions to develop and deliver a charging strategy for the next 12 years. Chargepoint locations will be chosen based on assessment of predicted local demand. Cllr Waseem Zaffar, cabinet member for transport and the environment, said: “This is a major step in supporting our climate emergency commitment to cut carbon emissions. It will be a key driver in supporting the electrification of Birmingham’s taxi fleet which is a major step in us improving air quality in the city centre.”
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Since July PayByPhone has signed up further clients including Broxtowe Borough Council and the train company Greater Anglia, whose car parks are managed by NCP. surfaces on which they are placed, potentially transferring them to hands or faces. Cllr Glen Sanderson, cabinet member for environment and local services at Northumberland County Council, said: “We wanted to explore a cashless payment option and get it implemented as quickly as possible, not only to ensure the welfare of people in our area and our staff, but also to give visitors more flexible payment options. PayByPhone has worked with us in a very tight time frame to get us up and running, allowing people to travel and to park with confidence and safety.”
Flowbird unveils ultra-fast charger Flowbird Smart City UK has expanded its range of electric vehicle (EV) chargepoints to include ultra-rapid charging units offering speeds in excess of 100kWh. Flowbird Smart City UK’s Park & Charge solution has been designed to enable local authorities to leverage their existing parking network assets, notably through a shared payment and management system. “By utilising common parking and EV charging payment and back office platforms, councils can optimise administrative resources, take an estate-wide view of their assets, collect and analyse integrated data and reconcile revenue reports for both services,” said Adam Sharp, digital services manager at Flowbird. “Critically, it also simplifies the consumer experience because they can access and pay for both parking and EV charging via the Flowbird app,
parking terminals or a whitelabelled web portal.” The range of EV chargers connected to Flowbird includes a line-up of fast, rapid and ultra-rapid units, offering speeds from 7kWh to over 100kWh, with both singleuser and multi-user access.
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CONSTRUCTION & REFURBISHMENT A-Z WHO’S WHO IN CAR PARK MAINTENANCE, REPAIR AND REFURBISHMENT
t Approved contractor to local authorities t Civil Engineers nationwide t Construction of complete car parks/ resurfacing/lining/creating new spaces t Car park equipment installers t Barriers: Pay-on-Foot and Pay & Display
F.L. Beadle & Sons Ltd Tel: 020 8330 4733 Email: email@example.com www.flbeadlegroup.com
t Induction loops, steel and various bollards supplied and installed t Cabling: CAT5, fibre optic, mains, etc t Kerbside islands built/extended t Established over 40 years
Structural Car Park Repair and Refurbishment Concrete repairs Electro chemical Deck waterproofing Anti carbonation coatings
Signage, CCTV Testing & investigation Lighting schemes & design Movement joints
T: 0845 8994444 E: firstname.lastname@example.org W: www.makers.biz
Only StructureCare offers complete single point responsibility refurbishment solutions. Deck Coatings. Expansion Joints. Concrete Repairs. Corrosion Mitigation. Anti-Carbonation Coatings. Free site investigation surveys and reports undertaken.
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Visit our website www.structurecare.com T: 0114 270 0100 E: firstname.lastname@example.org
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for those po sted to Europe or ROW
View all package deals and extra value subscriptions at TransportXtra.com/shop You may be eligible for a discount, contact us to find out.
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PARKING CONSULTANTS A-Z AN ESSENTIAL GUIDE TO EXPERT ADVICE
• CPE implementation assistance • Contract preparation (enforcement, customer services and IT) • Quality reviews of existing operations
• Management support • Policy and procedure manuals • TMA 2004 training and WAMITAB qualification • CEO training and WAMITAB qualification • Audits and compliance surveys • Telephone and customer care courses • Letter writing courses • Parking Manager’s courses • Mystery shopping
All services are delivered by staff with extensive operational experience in all areas of CPE. Our consultants are either ex-local authority managers or have many years of commercial CPE experience. We will tailor our services to meet your specific requirements. Contact details – Kirsty Reeves 07917 353 218 E-mail – firstname.lastname@example.org Please visit our web site for further information – www.parkingassociates.co.uk
Tel: 07807 832554 Email: email@example.com
Parking strategy & policy development Making the most of your assets Consultation & analysis Efficiency & productivity review
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For professional and independent consultation in parking please contact: Phil Grant on 07807 832554
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To enquire please call: Jason Conboy Tel: 020 7091 7895 Email: email@example.com
Established in 1991, with over 230 sa s ed customers comprising both public and private sector (including Local Authority and Health and Educa on establishments). Quality parking solu ons provided by our experienced in house specialists: GIS mapping and surveying • On street TRO signs and lines: legality and condi on surveys (sample surveys also available). • GIS mapping of TRO surveys, produc on of digital maps and TRO management for Order wri ng, upda ng and consolida on. • Data extrac on and conversion of text based schedules to digi sed map based solu ons. • Length of stay, usage, and occupancy parking surveys, both on and o street. • Compliance surveys and data analysis. • MTO site surveys and digi sing. • Surveying and mapping of infrastructure assets.
Consultancy services • Financial appraisal and e ciency reviews of parking service provision. • Collabora ve working – joint no ce processing and shared enforcement. • On and O street tra c regula on order wri ng. • DPE and CPE feasibility studies and implementa on. • Parking schemes consulta ons and design. • DPE/CPE services speci ca on wri ng and tender evalua on. • Annual Parking reports.
Contact: Peter Lowe B.Eng., C.Eng., M.I.C.E., FBPA Tel: 01492585055 or 07900264137 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
RTA Associates Ltd www.rtaassociates.co.uk
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PARKING SYSTEMS & SERVICES A-Z YOUR GUIDE TO PARKING SYSTEMS, SERVICES AND TECHNOLOGY PAYMENT SERVICES
Car Park Equipment Manufacturer Ticketed & Ticketless Systems ANPR & Prebook Mobile & Contactless Payment Multichannel Support Flexible Finance Options
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Info.email@example.com P +44 (0) 2392 414 423
SOLUTIONS FOR ANY PARKING ENVIRONMENT CAME Parkare, Unit 108, Longmead Road, Emerald Park East, Emersons Green, Bristol, BS16 7FG. Telephone: 0844 371 70 72 email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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For more information on our services, please contact: Lauren Appleby (North) email@example.com 07931 811088
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Shaun Byrne (South) email@example.com 07964 764099
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Credit & Debit Card Processing for Parking - The industry's most trusted solution for P&D, PoF and mobile - Integrated by all leading parking machine manufacturers - Maximum de-scoping from PCI DSS through PCI P2PE - Ultra-reliable and cost-effective - the highest value payment service in the UK NMI is a PCI DSS Level 1 Certified payment service provider, recommended by all major parking equipment manufacturers, and with solutions certified by all UK banks. NMI also offers call centre/web payment for PCN processing. Call us now on 0117 930 4455 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
To enquire please call: Jason Conboy Tel: 020 7091 7895 Email: email@example.com
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