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Mobile phone app possibility for car parking payments in Pembrokeshire

PAYING for car parking using a mobile phone app may be added to the council’s cashless payment system.

Pembrokeshire County Council has been rolling out cashless payment for car parks around the county since a decision made in 2019 but with covid-19 causing delays there are concerns it will not finish its work by a March 2021 deadline.

Problems with signal and network connection at some of the car parks included in the first phase of card payment machines prompted complaints from the public but a plan is in place to improve connectivity, a report to cabinet on Monday, (Nov 30) states.

Cabinet heard from Cllr Phil Baker, the member with responsibility for infrastructure added that these improvements would be done by Christmas and the other machines by March despite recent hold-ups.

A review of car park payments at the cashless options sites including in Haverfordwest, Tenby and Dale indicates that users are still favouring the cash option, especially for short stay but there is higher demand for cashless at longer stay car parks such as at the Salterns and The Green in Tenby.

Using mobile payment apps, which are used by other authorities including Cornwall, had been ruled out during previous considerations but were now back on the table, cabinet heard.

With the addition to provision improving the offering “immensely” said Cllr Baker, adding that drivers could add to their tickets while still sat in a café or engaging in whatever activity they were doing.

It is proposed to work with the ICT section and Transformation group to consider establishing robust broadband connections at our parking places.

There are also two solar machines, Dale and The Salterns, which will need additional upgrades as cashless machines use higher level of battery usage, the report adds.

Cabinet approved the updated reported and the plan to progress pay by phone solutions and digitally connected solutions.

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