Tag Archives for: australia

Is Australia running out of disability parking?

March 24, 2022



Is Australia running out of disability parking?



 That’s My Spot


4.3 million Australians are faced with a disability and this number will only increase as our population ages.


This is evidenced by the number of disabled parking permits issued in Australia soaring by 60% since 2007.


In New South Wales, Australia’s most populous state, a mere 2% of shopping centre parking is required to be accessible, and that percentage drops to a mere 1% in residential locations. This level is disproportionately low when 8% of the state’s drivers a disability parking permit and need to use accessible parking bays.


The problem that results is that Australian local municipalities are struggling to keep pace with this increasing demand for accessible parking bays, and there is no clear path to a solution.


Which leads to the question:


How can we cleverly solve the need for more disability parking without building more parking bays?


Accessible Parking Bays – A Finite Resource?


Though tempting to think that the obvious solution is rolling out more disability parking bays, this is not always feasible or quick. Factors such as:


  • city planning could impact the timing of new building design
  • retrofitting regular parking bays into existing retail, commercial, strata and other private locations will require capital expense which may not have been budgeted in these buildings
  • replacing regular parking bays with accessible ones in high-density areas which significant existing parking issues may also experience negative driver sentiment.
  • Whether new accessible parking spaces can actually be physically built at all in the limited parking areas available, due to additional size and access requirements.


These barriers to simply installing more accessible bays are issues that need to be resolved, especially in areas which experience general parking shortages in high-density city areas. And that navigating local municipalities and councils in Australia is a slow process.


A more immediate answer may well lie in innovative solutions to address the problem. For example, better allocation of parking resources through shifting models of bay usage, or deeper research into the average length of stay for mobility scheme participants to ensure the ecosystem of existing bays is never underutilised.


Another solution may lie in individual bay management enforcement, such as parking chains or parking bollards. At That’s My Spot, we’ve seen an increased demand for our parking bollards from a subset of the population we initially did not expect – users with disabilities, or users trying to enforce fair usage of accessible bays for those who need it.


Parking bollards have managed to secure individual parking bays for residential strata buildings, commercial office or warehouse buildings, shopping centres, apartments, airports and residents with little to no fuss, allowing drivers with disabilities to book a bay in advance and have certainty around  access to a disabled parking bay before they leave the house. Parking bollards also address the widespread issue of drivers who park next to disability bays, such as over gore zones, restricting ramp access for wheelchairs or other mobility aid, which require a wide berth to embark and disembark from their vehicles.


So let’s put our thinking caps on to figure out how to allocate disability parking bays better.



Attitudes on Disabilities


There is one more barrier to making accessible parking live up to its name – and that’s a social barrier. Public misconceptions and harmful stereotypes about “who classifies as disabled” can be hugely prohibitive to easy, stress-free usage of accessible parking, and merit mention in just about any discussion about disability access.


Too many perceptions are around disabilities having to be physical “visible” disabilities  – such as a wheelchair, a walking aid, or other medical equipment, or a disability you can see. However, of the 4.3 million Australians with a disability, only 4.4% require a wheelchair. This leaves majority of the people stepping out of their car, who have qualified for their disability parking permit, looking ostensibly no different from anyone else and at risk of ill-informed abuse from a vigilante member of the public.


Unfortunately, verbal abuse is often levied against disabled permit holders to the tune of them seeming to “walk just fine”. With as many as 9 in 10 disabilities being “invisible” to onlookers, the public perception has become needlessly inflamed by the idea that there is widespread abuse of accessible parking bays simply because they cannot interpret the disability at first glance. And the abuse takes a manifold of forms other than verbal – including angry notes, dirty looks, or even keying of cars.


This fear of shame, heckling, or even worse harassment has stymied people’s ability to effectively access the accessible parking they need. Imagine having a crippling cognitive or social disability, and knowing that simply through parking, you may incur undue aggression from members of the public.


This, of course, is a failure of a system designed to protect this subset of the population. Such public perceptions deserve equal merit in the fight against why disability parking in Australia, and indeed the world, is not nearly as accessible as it should be.


And the issue is indeed on a global scale. One US survey put to the general population discovered that the misunderstanding surrounding what qualifies as a disability is so rampant, that as many as 74% of respondents indicated they had witnessed disability bay misuse. Numbers like these are doubtlessly inflated by misconception.



The reality of disability parking has always been a contentious issue – one that governments are embattled with worldwide. And while the dust settles, real people are grappling to go about their daily lives. It is an issue that That’s My Spot CEO, Angelique Mentis, in her role as a Board Director at Parking Australia, is keenly digging into as part of the state’s trajectory for equitable accessible parking.


Australia may not be running out of disability parking bays, but it is certainly going to feel that way unless we find a better way to utilise them.

That’s My Spot

Parking Australia Appoints New CEO

December 13, 2018




Parking Australia Appoints New CEO




Parking Australia has appointed Stuart Norman as its new Chief Executive Officer. Stuart commenced in the role of CEO on Monday 10 December 2018.
Stuart replaces Interim CEO, Lorraine Duffy, who has been acting in the role of CEO for the past 3 months.
Stuart brings 20 years’ experience spanning a variety of industry sectors, including not-for-profit, commercial and government entities.
Stuart has a track record in building and transforming operating models for member-based organisations across Australia, and developing sustainable futures through robust control and governance. His former roles include General Manager – Industry Development at Bus Victoria (BusVic) and CEO of the Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT).
His experience includes developing advocacy and stakeholder engagement, driving collaboration to unite diverse groups and interests. In his role at BusVic, Stuart established a credible and strong voice at the table for the bus industry in relation to government emergency management and natural disaster planning.
“We are pleased to appoint a candidate with a great deal of association-based experience. We are confident that Stuart’s background in building up member-centric associations will help us move forward in 2019 with the delivery of the association’s new strategic plan, whilst continuing to grow and develop the association to meet the demands of our ever-changing industry”, said Sharon Prior, President of Parking Australia.
“Our Strategic Plan will focus on a number of key areas including promoting the highest standards across the parking industry, being a strong and united national voice for our members, maintaining and growing our membership at a national level, encouraging the adoption of innovative technology and providing forums for the sharing of information.”
Stuart is looking forward to furthering member engagement and industry relationships through a program of educational industry events and will host a ‘Meet the CEO’ Drinks in Sydney at the first event of 2019 on 12 February. More details will follow early in the new year.

More Information:


Sharon Prior, President – Parking Australia M: 0417 825 810

Stuart Norman, CEO – Parking Australia M: 0473 207 210

ACT Government begins rollout of smart parking technology in Australia’s capital

April 29, 2016



ACT Government begins rollout of smart parking technology in Australia’s capital


New technology emerging from the ACT could drastically reduce the amount of time that drivers in Manuka, Canberra spend looking for parking spaces.


Today the ACT Government, in partnership with parking technology firm Smart Parking Limited (ASX:SPZ), launched SmartPark, the real-time bay sensor parking solution alongside the new ParkCBR app designed to make finding and paying for parking even easier in the capital.


Manuka will host the 12 month trial that comprises of Smart Parking’s RFID-equipped SmartEye sensors, which uses infrared technology to detect when a vehicle has occupied a parking space. The real-time data is then used to populate the ParkCBR parking availability app and 5 new dynamic LED on-street signs with changes to parking space occupancy on a minute-by-minute basis.

Drivers parking in Furneaux multistorey car park will also be greeted with SmartGuide, the overhead guidance system which uses green and red lighting to guide them to available parking spots.

ParkCBR can be downloaded and accessed via smartphone devices to view a current picture of parking spaces nearby; once a space has been selected drivers will be given the option for GPS navigation and payment – meaning no more paper tickets or top-up trips to the meter.

ParkCBR is free to download for iPhone or Android from the Apple App Store or from Google’s Play Store.

Paul Gillespie, Smart Parking’s Group Chief Executive Officer, said he was delighted that SmartPark technology will now play a key role in helping to transform the parking experience in the capital.

“Complementing a number of innovative digital projects in the territory, SmartPark will now make it easier for drivers in Manuka to find a parking space, leading to reduced congestion and less vehicle emissions expanding on the ACT Government’s commitment to ensuring the ACT is a livable city now and into the future.”

ACT Chief Minister Andrew Barr said “This smart city initiative will actively support the ACT Governments goal of using technology to develop urban renewal and a solid digital infrastructure. It will support residents, local businesses and inter-state visitors to move in and out of Manuka more easily. This investment is about tailoring solutions to Canberra and developing technology which addresses the ACT community.”

For more information, trial locations and FAQ please visit smartparking.com and http://www.act.gov.au/smartparking

Notes to Editors:
Formed in 1993, Smart Parking is now one of the largest and fastest-growing bay sensor technology companies in the world. Smart Parking’s SmartPark solution has already been successfully deployed in capital cities across the globe in London, UK; Cardiff, Wales and Cape Town, South Africa with the deployment of over 3,500 sensors shortly to commence in Wellington, New Zealand.
Smart Parking specialises in some of the most technically innovative real-world solutions available within the market and continually leads the way in the development and application of these technologies, under the ‘Smart’ systems brand. They develop industry-leading technology and provide their clients with the very best parking management solutions.


For more information contact:
Emily Armstrong – Marketing Manager
T: +44 (0)845 230 3081 M: +44 (0)7825 753202 E: emily.armstrong@smartparking.com


Gold Coast Council Parks Additional $500k In Savings.

January 21, 2016

Gold Coast Council

Having been a trusted partner of GPS’ for 10 years, Gold Coast Council has renewed their confidence in its use. Installing new ticketless parking meters allowing motorists to park and then pay from any meter has banked a $ 500,000 in savings for the Council. Savings are from initial capital cost as well as on-going consumables and maintenance costs. Motorists can still get receipts on request. eReceipts can be implemented at any stage however, due to low demand for receipts this is no longer a priority.

The new state-of-the-art parking meters fully integrate with a mobile application, allowing the user to only pay for the amount of time parked rather than prepay for a set amount of time. Wireless sensors will be installed to detect the occupancy status of each individual parking space. Data is transmitted to dynamic signs in real-time, guiding the motorist to the nearest available space. The technology can also alert and direct parking wardens to expired or non-paid spaces. Conforming to an eco-friendly approach, the implementation of sensors has made printed tickets obsolete.

A council spokesman said the decision to buy meters without built-in printers saved the council up to $500,000. “This matter was considered in the procurement of the new technology and the decision to not incorporate printers within each of the city’s 450 new parking machines was made partly on the basis of the more than $500,000 in cost savings which resulted from both the reduction in initial capital cost and on-going maintenance and repair savings,” he said.

“The decision was made with the recognition that the new technology was compatible with smart phones and offered many payment choices.”

Mark Oliver, GPS’s Technical Director, said there are significant savings by going printer-less in both up-front costs as well as maintenance and consumables; in addition less machines are required as motorists no longer have to return to their vehicle to display a ticket. Paper costs and maintenance make up a significant part of the on-going costs of running parking operations. “Printer-less makes a lot of sense and is something we are getting asked about more and more” When asked about those motorists who needed a receipt Oliver said “The old lollipop meters never provided a receipt; we can provide an option allowing users to obtain an eReceipt if needed”.


About Global Parking Solutions

GPS is the global brand of Integrated Technology Solutions, part of the Linfox Armaguard Group of companies. Established in 1956 and employing over 20,000 staff. GPS has been designing and manufacturing parking solutions for over 20 years, having installed over 10,000 Multi Space Meters managing 35+ million transactions per annum and controlling 72,000 spaces.

Contact Information

Dion Knill -Global Sales & Marketing Manager

21 William Pickering Drive, Albany, Auckland 0632, New Zealand

+64-9-415 6588

Record Breaking Car Park Lease Agreement Signed

December 18, 2015




Australia’s Number 1 Car Parking marketplace has announced a new record car park booking. A new parking lease was signed this week for a 12 month booking, totalling $8,580 or $165 a week for the exclusive 24/7 secure parking space on York Street in Sydney.

Parkhound co-founder Michael Nuciforo said that this was a record deal in a record breaking year. “We have conducted over $1.5 million worth of car park bookings this year alone, and this particular deal was a new record for an individual lease”.

With the parking space located inside an apartment block opposite Wynyard Train Station, Mr Nuciforo said there was plenty of demand even at the $165 weekly asking price. “We had over 3 drivers bidding at the same time for this parking space within 24 hours of it coming onto the market”.

Mr Nuciforo added that some drivers were purely motivated by convenience, “When you look at the price of other parking options nearby and then factor in the risk of getting a parking fine or not finding a space at all, booking your own parking space is a very convenient option”.

Sydney resident, Amy, the owner of the parking space was obviously pleased with the deal. “I have received plenty of shorter-term bookings before but I was not expecting a 12 month lease for a car park of this value. It just goes to show how keen motorists are to lock in a parking space of their own”.

Mr Nuciforo said a lot of drivers were looking to lock in longer term parking when they returned to work in the New Year, “December, January and February are especially busy months for us with many workers looking to lock in their parking arrangements for next year. It’s a great time to lease your parking space if you have a spare car park with your apartment, house or business”.

Parkhound, which operates a marketplace where members can easily exchange and lease parking spaces with other drivers, has over 5,000 parking spaces across the country for drivers to select from. The average booking value is $55 a week.

About Parkhound
Parkhound is an online community where members can easily exchange and lease parking spaces with other drivers. Local residents make money from leasing a parking space and drivers get a cost effective and hassle free parking experience.

For further information
Michael Nuciforo, Co-founder
+61 466 910 446