The city council of Cardiff, Wales is launching a new smartphone app this week – Park Cardiff – designed to help drivers locate available parking spaces. 3,300 vehicle detection sensors have been embedded into the roads in ‘paid-for’ and disabled parking bays throughout the city that will use infrared technology to detect whether a space is free. The app can also connect users to Cardiff’s mobile parking payment service. The city is working with Smart Parking Limited, who has similar systems in Australia, New Zealand, the Middle East, South Africa, and Europe.
“Although our priority is for people to use public or alternative forms of transport, we accept that there will still be a requirement for people to use the private car,” said Councillor Caro Wild, cabinet member for Strategic Planning and Transport at Cardiff. “Given this, we want to provide the technology to make parking as easy as possible, so that people don’t have to drive around the city to find a parking space. Now that we have invested in this scheme, we want people that park in and around the city center to download the free app – it is easy to use and will help both the motorist and the council. Congestion and driving at low speeds significantly increases pollutants from cars, so we want people to find a space and park as quickly as possible.”
Paul Gillespie, Smart Parking’s Group Chief Executive Officer stated,“The launch of the Smart Parking system is an important step in realizing Cardiff’s vision of being a high quality, live-able smart city. Through the use of this innovative technology and the information it gathers, the city now have the opportunity to better understand the dynamics of traffic and parking.”