Saturday, July 13, 2024

Hastings snaps new parking technology

Hastings District Council is rolling out new parking management technology this month to help make parking monitoring more efficient, while also boosting safety for parking wardens.

The Council says wardens are increasingly being verbally abused by members of the public and the new system is intended to reduce health and safety risks.

“Parking management is about providing fair access to car parks for everyone using vehicles in the central city. A well-functioning parking system means a driver cannot stay in a car park for many hours or all day, thereby limiting its use to others,” Council said in a statement.

The new parking technology, Mobile License Plate Recognition (MLPR), uses a camera in a car to monitor metered and timed parking areas. It uses highly advanced license plate reading technology to capture images of parked vehicles’ locations, number plates and tyres.

Council regulatory solutions manager, John Payne said the camera does not take photos of people, only vehicles’ number plates and tyres.

In metered areas if someone has not paid, a parking warden will be notified and may issue an infringement notice, he said.

“Where an offence has occurred in a timed area, an infringement notice may be mailed by Council to the vehicle’s registered owner, after officers have reviewed and confirmed the offence.”

Mr Payne said having the technology in a car meant it could monitor parking areas more quickly than wardens walking the neighbourhood, marking vehicles and then having to reinspect them.

“More importantly, it will reduce the health and safety risk for parking wardens who are increasingly being verbally abused by members of the public, which is also making it challenging to find people willing to take on the role.”

All current time limits would remain the same – and areas where there were no parking controls would remain the same, he said.


“In some cases, parking infringement notices will be posted, so people may receive them after the
time of the offence, in most cases they will be processed and posted within a week.”
Car parking rules for mobility permit holders remain the same, and Council staff are liaising with
CCS Disability Action as the new technology is rolled out.
If a mobility card holder receives a ticket while using a non-disability car park, they can have the
ticket reviewed using the online portal (www.hastingsdc.govt.nz/services/parking/parking-tickets/),
or phone Council’s customer services team on 871 5000 for information on the review process.
Hastings councillor Wendy Schollum said the new technology had clear benefits.
“This initiative is essential for the safety of our parking wardens and ensuring fair access to
parking for all.
“Alongside our recent revitalisation efforts, it’s important that parking availability supports our
vibrant city centre.
“An education campaign will help residents and visitors adjust to these changes that are aimed at
improving safety and benefiting businesses and shoppers by promoting turnover and access to
parking.”
Funds generated from parking are re-invested back into parking infrastructure and maintenance,
and to improving pedestrian access.

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