Cambridge plans for the future with new Varioflex Pay-on-Foot parking system

Cambridge City Council (CCC) has replaced the existing access control systems in its four main multi-storey car parks (MSCPs) with a centrally managed Parkeon Varioflex Pay-on-Foot solution.
The Council sees itself at the very start of a process through which it proposes to really push the conventional boundaries for the way in which it manages the Citys demand for car parking.
We have a clear objective to build a service that is forward looking, will address customers rising expectations for modern and efficient access control mechanisms, and provide efficient, high quality and user-friendly equipment with flexible payment methods, stated Paul Necus, CCCs Head of Parking Services.
Overall, the Council has installed 18 Varioflex automatic pay stations - handling credit cards, banknotes, and coins - together with barriers and terminals across five entry and eight exit lanes. The four car parks, which include the two serving the Grafton Centre retail complex, provide a total of some 2,000 spaces.
CCC is also exploring a range of possibilities with Parkeon that include ways of introducing emissions-based charging and shifting parking behaviour at the weekend peaks, as well as online solutions to streamline payment processing systems, explained Bob Barnes, Parkeons UK Parking Director.

Automatic number plate recognition

Automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) has been integrated with the Varioflex system in each car park and the Council expects it to become a major driver in delivering the changes that it is aiming to introduce. More than 1,000 blue badge holders are now registered on the system, giving them easier access to free parking across all four car parks.
The new parking scheme is centrally monitored from the Councils Grand Arcade control room and plans are underway to link to the Citys main CCTV office. The Council wanted a solution that would deliver a consistent system across the City centre, and reduce both its operating costs and the need to maintain a physical presence in the car parks, added Paul Necus. Varioflex enables us to manage customer interactions and support them remotely from a central location, via the back-office system. It also improves customers access to different parking schemes and concessions. For example, we are trialling new arrangements that allow a blue badge holder to validate their free parking on entry, without needing to visit a customer kiosk.
In providing a resilient and efficient management reporting system, Varioflex gives CCC the potential to further integrate its P-o-F scheme with other systems, e.g. on-street parking and financial controls.
One of the reasons that Parkeon won the competitive tender for the scheme was because it was able to demonstrate that the Company had a product that could hit the ground running and manage the installation of new equipment into existing live parking operations. The flexibility of the European tender process has enabled CCC to nominate Parkeon as a Preferred Supplier for a number of years, both for its Varioflex systems and Pay & Display (P&D) terminals, noted Paul Necus.

About Parkeon

Parkeon is a key player in global parking and transport management solutions. With a 35-year history in the sector, the company is at the forefront of innovation and has a presence in 40 countries and 3,000 cities worldwide. The companys headquarters is in France, while it has offices across Europe (Belgium, Germany, Italy, Spain, United Kingdom) and in the United States, employing over 1,100 people worldwide.

Parkeons portfolio of products and systems is designed to ease congested streets and facilitate traffic flow. As a global leader in payment and ticketing solutions for parking and mass transit, Parkeon has played a significant role in the development of Pay & Display technology.

Formerly Schlumbergers Parking and Ticketing division, Parkeon formed in November 2003. In June 2007, Barclays Private Equity (France) became the major shareholder in Parkeon and the company posted revenues of €155 million in 2007. Parkeon prides itself on its participatory management style since December 2007, 30% of its employees have become shareholders in the business.

Parkeon Limited, 10 Willis Way, Poole, Dorset BH15 3SS, U.K.

Tel: 01202 339494 Fax: 01202 667293 Web:

Press contacts

Bob Barnes or David Lloyd - 00 44 (0)1628 602034
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