A number of changes to parking arrangements in Durham City will include conactless payments being accepted and a hike in charges.
Durham County Council says it is changing charges at some of its off-street and on-street sites from Monday, October 2, as well as bringing in contactless payments for motorists.
The authority says the changes will simplify price structures and parking arrangements and allow motorists greater flexibility; while the new on-street fees will also free up spaces for residents.
Charges will be rising at some sites but increases will generally be in line with inflation and are necessary to cover the transaction costs of the contactless payments, the council claims.
Changes at off-street sites will include:
The tariff in Providence Row car park aligning with the adjacent on-street pay and display tariff.
The tariff in The Sands car park increasing by 20p per time band.
The tariff in the Sidegate car park increasing by 40p per visit.
The Sunday flat rate at The Sands being replaced by the hourly rate.
The Sunday flat rate at Sidegate aligning with Monday to Saturday prices.
Changes to on-street parking will see an increase in pay and display charges at a number of sites.
Increase from 50p per half hour to 80p per half hour between 8am and 6pm at Crossgate, Allergate, South Street, Old Elvet and Claypath/Gilesgate.
Increase from 30p per half hour to 50p per half hour at Oswald Court.
Council bosses say the changes to tariffs at the Sands and Sidegate car parks are designed to remove confusion, which can arise because both have hourly daytime and flat rate evening
charges, where people are looking to park across both periods.
The change at Providence Row will allow greater flexibility by allowing motorists to have shorter stays.
The introduction of contactless payments at Sands and Sidegate will mean motorists are no longer restricted to having to pay by cash or having to pay for a set number of hours in advance, only to find they have paid for too many or not enough.
Instead they will be able to register their bank card on arrival and be charged for the time they stay.
The increase in charges at the on-street pay and display sites have been brought in to free up spaces for residents.
Dave Wafer, the council’s strategic traffic manager, said: “The changes we are making will make arrangements at some of our sites easier for motorists to understand, increase flexibility and create more short stay parking in the city for our residents.
“We had a number of people asking us why they could only pay for parking by cash while city centre residents with permits often tell us that they cannot park near their homes because spaces are taken up by visitors. The changes we have made look to address both these points.
“Where charges have gone up we have tried to keep the increase in line with inflation and it is worth stressing that these changes apply only to certain sites.
"On-street parking is available at a number of other locations and we do offer park and ride for just £1.70 a day.”