11:58AM, Wednesday 25 January 2012
Work is underway to install a ground-breaking parking system at the Broadway multistorey in Maidenhead town centre.
The Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead council is scrapping the unpopular pay and display system and investing £120,000 converting the car park to 'pay as you like'.
The change follows the success of the Park and Thrive campaign run by the Advertiser, Nicholson's Shopping Centre and Maidenhead and District Camber of Commerce.
Workmen have started installing the new system which will be trialled by council officers before going live for the public. The council hopes the new system will be live by early March.
It will see the car park barriers removed and replaced with number plate recognition software.
New 'ticketless' pay machines will also be installed.
Drivers will have the choice of paying for a set period of parking, paying on exit, paying with 24 hours over the Internet, or having the money deducted each month from a personal account.
Tariffs will remain the same.
The borough is only the second authority in this country to install the system, which will be managed by global parking company Parkeon.
Council parking manager Neil Walter said there would be plenty of support from car park staff to help people get used to the new system.
The Park and Thrive campaign ran for 20 weeks last year and ended in victory in July, when the cabinet agreed to use £50,000 from the 'people's choice' participatory budget, to replace the pay and display system.
The remainder of the money will come from the council's capital programme.
Councillor Phill Bicknell, cabinet member for highways, transport and environment, said the council had 'listened to what residents wanted' and he was 'excited' about the new system.
If successful the system may be rolled out to other car parks in Windsor and Maidenhead.
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