Port Taranaki is to replace the pay and display parking terminals at the Lee Breakwater carpark with new ‘pay by plate’ machines – doing away with paper tickets.
Port Taranaki chief executive Guy Roper said the ‘pay by plate’ terminals would be more efficient for users and were expected to be more reliable. Users enter the number plate of their vehicle at the terminal and pay for the time they wish to park. They do not need to return to their car to display a ticket.
“We have had reliability issues with the current pay and display terminals, such as tickets not coming out of the machines and the machines not operating effectively.
“Part of the problem has been the coastal location – sand and salt have been getting into the machines and preventing them from working to an acceptable level. It has been causing frustration for carpark users and we apologise for that.”
Mr Roper said after research and discussions, Port Taranaki’s contracted supplier and installer had agreed to remove the pay and display terminals and replace them with two ‘pay by plate’ terminals at no cost to Port Taranaki. The new terminals are New Zealand made and are in use across the country with a proven record of reliability. The supplier has locally based support staff.
The ‘pay by plate’ terminals will be installed by the boat ramp and the Bach café.
“It is expected that because there aren’t so many moving parts with these new terminals, such as not having to issue tickets, they will be more reliable. They will also be more efficient for users who won’t have to return to their car to display a ticket,” Mr Roper said.
The new terminals will accept cash, credit card, and paywave payment only – no eftpos can be used.
“Our data from paid parking shows that more than 80% of payment is made by cash, and cards with paywave features are becoming more common.”
The existing machines will be removed in mid-July, with the new terminals to be installed by the start of August. Until the new terminals are installed, parking will be free for casual parking at the Lee Breakwater carpark, although users must still park in the correct colour-coded areas. There will be no change for boat trailer permit holders, whose annual permit is valid until September 30.
Mr Roper said when the ‘pay by plate’ system was operational, paid parking and monitoring of the carpark would resume.
Paid parking was introduced at the Lee Breakwater carpark in December 2015 as increased use by boat users and the public had caused congestion and frustration.
The new parking management system has led to more efficient use of the carpark, with specific areas assigned for boat trailer users and the general public.
There are now 38 dedicated car parks, including three accessibility parks, 76 dedicated trailer parks and 38 shared car/trailer parks – a total of 152. There are also 240 free car parks in the vicinity. Parking fees are $1 an hour, with a maximum of $10 a day.
“We want all the public, from boaties and commercial fishermen, to walkway users and families to have the chance to be able to use the area and we think what we have put in place is the fairest way to ensure that,” Mr Roper said.