EPA Awards 2017

No less than five of the entries Q-Park submitted for the 2017 EPA Awards were shortlisted from the 28 projects from 13 different European countries of which the quality was very high.

We were pleased to have so many of our projects shortlisted, the most we have ever achieved. And we were delighted to hear during the award ceremony at the 18th EPA Congress held in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, that two of our entries were winners in their categories:

  • Prevent Smash & Grab
  • Cashless & Contactless

The five Q-Park finalists shortlisted were:

  • Category 1 – Tapiola Park, Espoo, Finland
  • Category 2 – Queen Square, Liverpool, UK
  • Category 4 – Cashless & Contactless payments
  • Category 5 –
    • Prevent Smash & Grab campaign, Amsterdam, the Netherlands
    • Q-Park Blogs - a pragmatic knowledge-sharing platform
Frank De Moor Future of parking

CEO Frank De Moor talked to the congress about Q-Park’s vision on A Bright Future for Parking.

Cashless & Contactless payments

Cashless & Contactless payments enable motorists to access and exit a parking facility using their payment card, just as they would check in and out of public transport. Customers now consider card payments intuitive and often prefer contactless, because it’s quick, safe and easy.

This contemporary way of paying for parking enhances the customer experience; at the same time, it makes our payment transaction systems future-proof. Naturally, on accessing the parking facility, a motorist can still take a traditional paper ticket and pay by cash or card at a Pay-on-Foot machine before driving to the exit.

Top 3 advantages for the customer:

  • Customers use their debit or credit card, fuel card or phone to enter and exit car park
  • Customers save time as they don’t have to go to the Pay-on-Foot machine
  • No paper ticket to lose

Customers clearly like paying by card. Since we implemented cashless and contactless payments at our parking facilities in the Netherlands, the ratios have shifted from 80 percent cash to more than 80 percent card transactions.

Contactless & Cashless

Top 3 advantages for the landlord and car park operator:

  • All payment options open
  • Safer – less cash at the car park
  • Fewer breakdowns and reduced maintenance costs for barriers and machines

Prevent Smash & Grab

Q-Park recognises that municipalities want to promote their cities as safe and attractive places to visit. Low theft from parked cars enhances a city’s reputation and contributes to the enjoyment of the visit. This is important because it is number 3 in the top 10 concerns about criminality.

In a public-private partnership (PPP) with the Municipality of Amsterdam, the Amsterdam Police Department and behavioural psychology experts, we developed a ‘Prevent Smash & Grab’ campaign. The campaign is flexible and delivers the message to motorists at the right time and place and makes prudent use of cognitive moments.

Smash & Grab logo

Three seconds to make a difference

The behavioural psychology experts recommended the messaging be placed on walls and pillars at eye height to remind people to take their valuables with them as they get out of their car. Within the crucial three seconds before they think ahead to the reason that they are parked.

The campaign's four key messages

  • A huge range of items attracts car burglars, even items that you might not consider valuable.
  • Items hidden from sight in the car, does not mean they are safe and unreachable.
  • Car break-ins happen faster than people can imagine, even in car parks considered ‘safe’.
  • It is easy to prevent a car break-in: do not leave valuables in your car!

A Bright Future for Parking

CEO Frank De Moor was invited to speak at the 2017 EPA congress held in Rotterdam. In his entertaining presentation, entitled ‘A Bright Future for Parking’ he explained Q-Park’s vision on the future of urban mobility and parking.

Mobility experts expect that technology around autonomous vehicles (AVs) will continue to develop, and car sharing will become increasingly popular. However, as Evgeny Morozov says ‘Technology changes all the time; human nature, hardly ever.’ Even though reason says that car sharing and active transport, such as walking and cycling, are smart, people like to drive and they value the independence that having and using their own car gives.

He continued by examining the percentage of AVs needed to reap benefits and how soon that is likely to be reached. Q-Park thinks it will take longer than current predictions to reach the 80% penetration required so that motorists can let go of the wheel. Perhaps this tipping point will be reached by 2045 on highways and 2085 in city centres.

Bright Future of Parking

AVs will need somewhere to park for their next journey. Q-Park does not expect AVs to park on the outskirts of town, because people will not want to wait more than a few minutes for their ride, so these vehicles will want to park nearby.

What’s more, when autonomous and shared vehicles start to combine, it’s expected that many people will leave public transport in favour of personalised transport options. This implies that there will be a substantial increase in numbers of vehicles on our already congested urban streets.

Off-street parking capacity is a key infrastructure asset for smart cities and will be the solution for long-term and short-term parking as well as for residents and city guests.

As an urban partner, Q-Park will continue to engage with municipalities and planners to encourage P+R and P+W facilities. With a strategy focusing on partnership in place to support cities today for a bright future tomorrow.