Following a delay caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, East Suffolk Council will now begin rolling out new parking tariffs across the district - including a simplified pricing structure and free half hour parking across a number of sites.
Reducing over 50 different price points to just three or four main ticket types across the district, the new price structure will see prices reduced or frozen in over 70% of cases. Additionally, the council has introduced 30 minutes free parking in a number of car parks to support people who have told us that they make regular short visits. This will also support local businesses who will benefit from drivers making quick turnarounds in our car parks.
East Suffolk Council will introduce the new tariffs in a staggered roll out, with signs erected to indicate the new charges, starting in Bungay on Monday 24 August. The roll out will then continue through the district across the next few weeks.
Cllr Norman Brooks, East Suffolk’s cabinet member for Transport, said: “Our new tariffs have been led by the data we have received from historical parking information and we are determined to make the process as simple and reasonable as possible. We know that the range of different charges has been inconsistent, and we also know that the tariffs to date have not necessarily suited the vast majority of people who park in our towns.
“The prices for longer stays remain competitive and our data tells us that around 75% of all users will pay just £1 or £1.50 for a two-hour stay. These changes are not about making money – in fact, we will not be making a penny of additional revenue from them, with more than 70% of tariff levels reduced or stay the same for a two-hour visit. This is about continuing to invest in improving the parking experience in East Suffolk, making it easier for everyone.”
East Suffolk Council is also continuing to make the best use of technology to improve services by making them more efficient, and has seen an increase of 129% on contactless payments in its car parks as visitors take advantage of the simple RingGo app to park with ease and confidence.
Available in all East Suffolk’s car parks, RingGo is a quick and easy to use mobile phone service which lets people pay for their parking with a credit or debit card, via an app, rather than using cash at the machine. This means that drivers no longer need to queue at the machine or handle cash to pay for their parking.
Whilst there used to be a convenience fee of 20p to use the app, East Suffolk Council covers this cost, so drivers do not get charged extra for using this payment option. There is however a small extra charge if drivers choose to opt in to receive SMS reminders, of when you time is running out.
To register with RingGo and go contactless, go to https://ringgo.co.uk/.
Parking management moved from the police to East Suffolk Council in April 2020, to improve parking locally and tackle nuisance and unlawful parking, enabling the Council to address the parking problems that are affecting communities the most.
Cllr Brooks continues: “Our role is to support local communities and manage parking demand by enforcing existing regulations and ensuring there are parking opportunities for residents and visitors alike. Key to this is tackling inconsiderate and illegal parking which can impact on businesses as well as pose a danger to other road users and pedestrians.”
Alongside this, the Council also reviewed how it administrated on-street parking permits, exemptions and dispensations. As a result of this, a new digital system has been put in place, enabling residents and others to apply for and manage permits online. The system also recognises valid permits from a vehicle’s registration number, meaning that permit holders will no longer need to remember to display their permits.