One of Europe’s largest roadside service operators takes a fresh look at parking to eradicate unauthorised use from its forecourts.
About Euro Garages
Euro Garages operates roadside facilities around the country. The company is committed to providing excellent service to motorists, as well as value-added reasons to visit its retailers. These include big-name coffee chains, fast-food restaurants, bakeries and convenience stores which are anchor tenants at many locations.
Parkingeye consulted with EG Group to help address a significant problem it was having across its sites. Motorists were parking on forecourts and service areas, using them as ad hoc car parks and leaving their vehicles, sometimes for days at a time.
Misuse caused service areas to be over-crowded and appear uninviting to customers, impacting footfall and spoiling the service experience. The situation was having a sustained, biting impact on revenues and visit frequency at many sites. It was creating operational issues too. Cars parked outside of designated areas prevented fuel tankers from reaching the pumps, resulting in aborted deliveries and charges, as well as complaints and congestion.
Ahmed Kazi, Group Operations Director of Euro Garages, explained, “Some locations don’t have large parking areas, so even a small number of unauthorised parking occurrences have an effect on a site’s bottom line. There’s also social and environmental concerns; congestion causes pollution as stationary vehicles idle whilst waiting for spaces and visitors who need to make use of facilities are prevented from doing so.”
Issues varied by site. Some are situated next to car showrooms, with customers leaving their cars while they perused new models. Others were near car repair facilities, with staff using Euro Garages parking areas daily
Euro Garages needed a cost-effective solution which would remove abuse, reduce congestion, and ensure car parks were used by customers exclusively.
“Speaking on behalf of our sector, parking abuse affects us all and is common. Our use considerations vary; petrol station-only sites need a 20-minute maximum stay, while food & beverage tenants may need flexible arrangements. For instance, the mobile workforce of a large utility company meet at our coffee shops for business discussions on-the-fly, which of course we want to protect. We have to take account of our tenants’ business needs and support their footfall and trade, making sure no customers are dissuaded from visiting. We also have to pre-allocate spaces for our own staff and fleet vehicles.”
Euro Garages had to make sure that the car park solution was adaptable and scalable. It was essential the provider establish a ‘framework agreement’ enabling new sites to go live within 12 weeks from first consultation to activation.
The Parkingeye Solution
ANPR was implemented across 16 sites, whilst a signage-only solution was used at 6 more. Those experiencing regular abuse typically saw unauthorised parking drastically reduced in 2-3 days of the system going in on account of it being a strong visual deterrent. Not only do cameras provide effective policing, they produce valuable insights across accurate capacity monitoring, visitor frequencies and monthly trends. These can be analysed by managers at any location or centrally by head office. The system can also identify customers who return often (for promotional activities), whilst 99% uptime supports 24-hour forecourt availability.
Furthermore, over 75% of issues are fixed remotely by the Parkingeye technical experts, removing the cost of infrastructure repairs. Parkingeye has worked with Euro Garages since 2010. The two companies have a long partnership that contributes to the customer experience at Euro Garages. Site performance is monitored closely by Parkingeye’s expert account management team who liaise with Ahmed to answer queries, ensure rapid issue resolution, continual improvement initiatives and new sites coming up in the roll-out plan. Parkingeye also advises on layout & design, planning advice, signage production and groundworks.
“We’ve changed sites in line with the expertise and recommendations of Parkingeye, and generally we just let them get on with it. Sites become self-maintaining immediately after going live, so they are no hassle.”
“Certain sites require attendants to visit on occasion for manual issuing of Parking Charges Notices but it’s rare. The cameras are the optimum solution. Parkingeye lets us know whenever they need anything, such as inputs on site planning or asbestos regulations for our knockdown/rebuild sites. We trust in their expert advice and appreciate their responsive support.”
“We receive detailed monthly reporting of ANPR data across the portfolio. We’ve had the same report type for years at our own request because it’s clear and easy to understand. This data is analysed by our finance teams to provide useful insights, plus we have the option to request it in other formats and regularity if needed.”
Reduction in parking misuse across the portfolio. Spaces are now available for genuine customers
Over 99% uptime: ANPR works accurately and reliably around the clock
The Benefits of Working with Parkingeye
Advantages of the system include the immediate removal of abuse at affected sites, improved space availability, increased parking revenues, clear signage that is consistent, and a more positive customer experience. This enhances ROI of acquired properties quickly, ensuring tenants benefit from the great locations they occupy.
Footfall remains high and loyalty strong. Newly secured sites can be integrated into the agreement quickly, and Euro Garages appreciates having a parking solution that is essentially self-managing.
To find out more about how Parkingeye can help your business, contact us today.
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