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Card payment option and reduced charges among parking changes announced by Barnet Council
A parking policy overhaul including a new card payment option and reduced charges has been announced by Barnet Council.
The authority plans to install credit card machines in all of its car parks and introduce a new half-day visitor permit for those living in residential CPZs.
Parking scratch cards will be offered to shopkeepers at a discounted rate in an attempt to increase their availability and a wider parking charge reduction is also due to be announced.
The changes have been brought in by cabinet member for environment Councillor Dean Cohen, who took over the parking role from Councillor Brian Coleman in May.
Councillor Coleman scrapped the borough's parking ticket machines in favour of the unpopular pay-by-phone system in November.
New half-day permits, priced at £2.20, will free up residents who are currently forced to give visitors a full-day permit at £4.16 each.
Businesses will be offered a five per cent discount on parking scratch cards with the ability to sell them on at face value.
It is hoped the small financial initiative will encourage more businesses to sell the cards, which many people complain are not widely enough available.
The council says it also plans to reduce charges in off-street car parks to make the rates more competitive with other parking options, though no details have yet been announced.
New vouchers and reduced car park charges will be introduced in August, the council says, while credit card machines will be installed later this year.
The policy changes come after Councillor Cohen called for a parking review in all of the borough’s town centres, which began in North Finchley last week.
In a statement released by Barnet Council this morning, he said: “After receiving feedback I have decided to make these changes as I’m not convinced current charges are set at the correct level to benefit either business or residents.
“These changes have been designed to help businesses thrive while allowing residents to carry out their daily business at a fair and affordable rate.
“I also hope that these new initiatives will make parking more convenient for our residents who wish to use an alternative method to pay-by-phone.”