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Cambridge City Council chooses APT Skidata in major integration project

08 October 2015

APT Skidata, a UK parking systems business, has completed a major contract to provide Cambridge City Council with a range of parking, car park management and people access management technologies after a lengthy and complex tender process

APT Skidata will provide both the parking facility hardware - which includes its proven, state-of-the-art barriers and payment stations - and all of the associated software that enables parking facilities to integrate directly with retailers’ promotions and maximise city events and other initiatives.

The initial provision is for the Grand Arcade multi-storey car park, where ten payment machines and 12 barriers have been installed.  The next stages of the project could include Cambridge’s other four multi-storey car parks, which when installation is complete, will provide a single networked and centralised car park management solution.

Sean Cleary, Commercial Operations Manager, Parking Services at Cambridge City Council explains that the tender design process took the best part of three years to complete: “The reason for the complexity of the project is that we wanted to take full advantage of all available integration technology that would enable us to work in partnerships with retailers, businesses and event organisers in Cambridge,” he says. “It needed to be future proof.”

APT Skidata’s technology enables consumers to book and pay for their parking and Sean says the Council is interested in its full capabilities: “We are keen to investigate how the APT Skidata system can incorporate purchases of refreshments, booking of hotel stays or securing tickets for city events and all within the same process of when paying for your parking.  Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) technology, barcode and QR to mobile phone data are areas we really want to interrogate and use so that visitors can pre-book activities and have the option of either printing tickets at home or saving these directly to electronic devices, whilst maintaining an efficient access system,” he says.

Ease of access and exit, as well as the process of payment for disabled drivers was also a key requirement and Sean says he is pleased that APT Skidata has incorporated these functions into all their systems:

“The ultimate aim of our tender process was to create a parking infrastructure that would support the local economy, provide convenient and accessible facilities whilst supporting seamless delivery of our services to visitors coming to Cambridge,” Sean continues. “APT Skidata was chosen as the preferred supplier because its IT systems matched the detailed requirements of our tender. They were factual, informative and provided good value for money.

“Because of the complexity of this project, the implementation was unsurprisingly challenging. APT Skidata needed to work hard to meet all of our expectations and they worked closely with us to achieve the objective of an installation with minimal impact to our services,” he adds.

“We're confident that through clear communications and a joined up approach that we will continue to receive the high standards of service that we here at Cambridge City Council would expect from a company such as APT Skidata.”

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