Smart park­ing plan Ex­pert says rates can change ac­cord­ing to driver demand

Townsville Bulletin - - NEWS - CHRISTIE AN­DER­SON christie. an­der­son@ news. com. au

THE North Queens­land Cow­boys are fol­low­ing their on- field suc­cess with an off- field sign­ing that will see the club con­tinue to thrive.

The Cow­boys have re- signed with their long­est- run­ning spon­sor Toy­ota, which has been with the club since 2003, in a multi- year deal.

Star Cow­boys for­ward Ja­son Tau­malolo, who signed a 10- year con­tract ex­ten­sion with the club DY­NAMIC park­ing pric­ing where the cost of a car space fluc­tu­ates ac­cord­ing to demand could help ease Townsville’s park­ing woes, ac­cord­ing to a na­tional in­dus­try body.

Lor­raine Duffy, chief ex­ec­u­tive of Park­ing Aus­tralia, said dy­namic park­ing was a sup­ply and demand model that meant when park­ing demand was this year, said the spon­sor­ship sign­ing was a mas­sive deal for the club.

“For us to be suc­cess­ful on the field we need strong sup­port off the field and at the Cow­boys we’re so blessed to have com­mit­ted part­ners like Toy­ota,” Tau­malolo said.

“I’ve pledged a long- term com­mit­ment to this great club, and Toy­ota and the North Queens­land Toy­ota Deal­ers have done the high, so was the price. “Dy­namic/ demand- based park­ing uses pe­ri­ods of high and low demand to your ad­van­tage by ad­just­ing pric­ing ac­cord­ingly,” Ms Duffy said.

“Think of it a bit like ride hail­ing apps such as UBER; they cal­cu­late how many app users in a given vicin­ity are seek­ing rides, while tak­ing into ac­count real- time traf­fic con­di­tions, set­ting the price based on what the con­sumer is will­ing to pay.

“The ob­jec­tive for park­ing is to en­sure Townsville re­tains its same, hav­ing been our prin­ci­ple spon­sor for 15 years and count­ing.”

Cow­boys CEO Greg Ton­ner said it was a win- win for both par­ties.

“Toy­ota has been by far our long­est- run­ning prin­ci­pal part­ner,” he said. “Each or­gan­i­sa­tion is enor­mously proud of the part­ner­ship, and that’s be­cause it’s a per­fect fit in such a con­nected, com­mit­ted and pas­sion­ate com­mu­nity.” v i b r a n c y across all pe­ri­ods, whether it’s dur­ing work hours, w e e k e n d s and evenings and that driv­ers aren’t cir­cling the streets, get­ting frus­trated.”

The sug­ges­tion comes af­ter 106 car parks in Flin­ders St West, Eyre St and Jones St were con­verted from free park­ing to paid spa­ces.

The move was un­pop­u­lar

Toy­ota Aus­tralia’s Sean Han­ley said the com­pany was looking for­ward to con­tin­u­ing their work with the Cow­boys in the com­mu­nity.

“Toy­ota al­ready has a fan­tas­tic re­la­tion­ship with the Cow­boys Com­mu­nity Foun­da­tion – the club’s fundrais­ing arm – and this re­newed part­ner­ship will only strengthen that con­nec­tion,” Mr Han­ley said. with nearby busi­nesses who said the change would drive their cus­tomers away.

Since the car spa­ces were changed, they have only about 20 per cent oc­cu­pancy.

Ms Duffy said im­ple­ment­ing new park­ing tech­nolo­gies were be­com­ing more af­ford­able but sug­gested they should be tri­alled in the city first.

“An ever- ex­pand­ing wire­less sen­sor net­work and the wide­spread use of smart­phones makes it eas­ier than ever to gauge demand and take ad­van­tage of dy­namic pric­ing,” WHAT A FEEL­ING: Ja­son Tau­malolo at The Ville Re­sortCasino for the spon­sor­ship an­nounce­ment. she said. “How­ever, key to the suc­cess of im­ple­men­ta­tion is to trial this first. This would not be easy but demand based pric­ing will ul­ti­mately give driv­ers more choice, al­low­ing them to de­cide what they are pre­pared to pay de­pend­ing on the time of the day and lo­ca­tion.

“Data is the key to any suc­cess­ful im­ple­men­ta­tion and the in­for­ma­tion the coun­cil can source from just tri­alling this type of ‘ smart’ park­ing will as­sist with their de­ci­sion making and trans­parency to ratepay­ers.”

Picture: SHAE BEPLATE

Lor­raine Duffy.

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