What options are there for different ways to charge for parking?
One option is dynamic pricing. This is a system that can react to demand for parking. Under this system charges are based on historical averages and how much current activity is varying from those averages. Based on the exact time and day, if the current parking space occupancy is lower than expected, discount prices can be put out. If the parking space occupancy is higher than expected, higher rates can be set. This method seeks to balance the supply and demand and improve the parking experience for customers. In Los Angeles, prices for parking are lower with dynamic pricing in 60 percent of parking spaces and higher in only 27 percent of spaces. San Francisco also has this system in place.
However, the Council must follow set consultation and notification procedures and timeframes before making significant changes to fees. Therefore, even if the Council had the technology in place, under the current legislation and bylaw, it is not possible to have dynamic pricing.
Another option is demand responsive pricing. This is similar to dynamic pricing and works by splitting the city into ‘parking areas’ with rates varying to reflect the demand for parking in each area and at peak and off peak times. At regular intervals, the prices are readjusted based on the occupancy levels observed in the previous quarter. The aim is to achieve 85 percent occupancy. Auckland City has demand responsive pricing in some parts of the city.