Council brings consistency and cost savings to CBD parking
Council’s Assets and Services Committee today agreed, subject to full Council approval, to a trio of changes relating to parking in central Blenheim as it gears up to move to the new Pay by Plate parking meters, on Monday 24 June.
The new ticketless Pay by Plate meters will see drivers enter their vehicle plate number and their desired parking time at the terminal, before using coins or a credit/debit card to pay.
Council’s Parking Sub-Committee Chairman, Councillor Brian Dawson, said the move to introduce credit and debit card payments to the on-street car parks is a first for the region.
“This change prompted a review of the one-off, 50 cent card fee that’s currently charged at Blenheim and Picton’s off-street parking areas.
“Rather than carry this across to the Pay by Plate system, Council’s Assets and Services Committee today agreed to reduce the fee to 5 percent of the transaction value, which is great news for drivers.
“It brings the cost of one hour of on-street parking down from $2.00 (50 cent flat fee plus $1.50 for one hour’s parking) to $1.57 including the card fee – 5 percent of the $1.50 parking charge,” Clr Dawson says.
In another win for drivers, the hours charged for on-street parking will reduce by 30 minutes. Currently paid on-street parking is required from 9:00 am to 5.30 pm, Monday to Friday. However, for off-street parking areas the charge time is from 9.00 am to 5.00 pm.
“In order to make it simple and consistent for drivers, Council has decided to make all charging, both on and off-street, between 9.00 am and 5.00 pm,” Clr Dawson says.
The third change relates to the removal of nine kerbside meters outside Blenheim School. This area will be converted to 30 minute parking in order to improve accessibility along Alfred Street where the footpath is narrow.
“The three changes agreed to today make parking in central Blenheim easier for drivers. We want to ensure people get the most out of their time in town, without having to think too much about parking,” Clr Dawson says.
“Pay by Plate will also help achieve this. It is a very easy system to use; you simply enter your plate number, select your parking time, press ok, pay and then walk away. It’s ticketless which means there’s no need to return to your vehicle after you’ve paid for your parking, and the new ‘Pay my Park’ app will allow drivers to pay for parking and top up remotely. The new meters also allow people to move between kerbside parking spaces and use unspent parking credit during the day.”