APT Skidata and CitiPark nominated for UK National Air Quality Awards


Parking technology company APT Skidata and leading car park operator CitiPark have been nominated as finalists in the UK 2017 National Air Quality Awards for their plans to tackle air pollution in the parking industry.

The two companies have been shortlisted for the Commercial Sector Air Quality Initiative of the Year Award for their work to incentivize city drivers toward low or zero emissions vehicles through the use of emissions-based parking tariffs.

CitiPark has installed APT Skidata’s emissions-based parking tariff technology at its Clipstone Street branch in central London. The installation was the first of its kind in the UK and with individual parking tariffs set according to vehicles’ CO? emissions, city drivers are being incentivised to use low- or zero-emission vehicles.

APT Skidata’s technology uses automatic license plate recognition (ALPR) cameras to identify and record each vehicle as it enters a car park, and compares the plate to a database that includes details on CO? emissions.

Those details are subsequently taken into consideration on payment, with the correct tariff automatically calculated based on its environmental credentials. Cars emitting up to 75g CO?/km, defined as an ‘ultra-low emission vehicle’ (ULEV), qualify for a cheaper Green tariff, with rates starting at 20% less than the regular cost. The technology has the potential to alter the way tariffs are calculated in all city centers – places that typically have the highest levels of air/vehicle pollution.

The system was first trialed in April, and within four weeks the number of low-emission vehicles choosing to park at Clipstone increased to an average of 25 across the month, and this quickly rose again to 60 qualifying vehicles per month. CitiPark is now trialing APT Skidata’s system at its flagship car park in Leeds, which has been selected as it is another city whose local authority is embracing the green agenda with T-charging (Toxic Charge) due to come into force in 2020. CitiPark is also looking into new parking products such as season tickets for those cars who already qualify for the Green ticket.

“More people than ever are aware of their environmental impact,” said Pete Brown, managing director of APT Skidata, a joint-venture of Austrian companies Swarco and Skidata.

“Both the government and industry are pushing to reduce urban emissions. Our initiative aims to see emissions-based technology improve air quality by encouraging motorists toward ‘greener’ vehicles, and CitiPark’s Clipstone Street branch proves that the technology works and can attract more environmentally conscious drivers.”

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Tom has edited Traffic Technology International (TTi) magazine and its Traffic Technology Today website since May 2014. During his time at the title, he has interviewed some of the top transportation chiefs at public agencies around the world as well as CEOs of leading multinationals and ground-breaking start-ups. Tom's earlier career saw him working on some the UK's leading consumer magazine titles. He has a law degree from the London School of Economics (LSE).