Parking metres just got that little bit smarter

THWARTED by technology again!

Don’t you just love racing back to your car park after your parking ticket expired, only to experience that thrilling flood of relief as you’ve somehow avoided a parking ticket?!

Well, I know I do.


And I have to admit, I lean more towards luddite than early adopter when it comes to embracing new technology. I don’t like being connected to everyone, everywhere, all the time – I like my downtime – but it seems like the aim of modern gadget makers is to ensure we never have the opportunity to switch off.

They also like to make things run efficiently. Super efficiently. ‘Don’t miss a single cent of potential profits’ efficiently.

Take the Gold Coast City Council’s latest innovation. Their new $10 million parking system, which includes state-of-the-art parking metres, a smartphone app-based payment system and ground-based sensors, is being installed in parking hot spots across the coast.

And due to all the splendidly smart technology involved, it’s predicted to help boost Council coffers by a few hundred grand, give or take.

How? By giving us patrons the exact amount of parking we’ve paid for – and not a second more.

You see, the sensors mounted in nearly 3,500 paid parking spaces will instantly advise parking inspectors when a car has overstayed its time limit, allowing tickets to be issued literally seconds after your parking metre has expired.

No more sneaky mad dashes to the car…

It’s not all bad news for motorists, though. Burleigh councillor Greg Betts, who said the innovations are expected to “generate a great deal more in parking revenue for the council”, said the fancy new system will send notifications to phones, warning drivers that their paid parking is about to expire.

And there are a couple of other features that will be genuinely helpful to motorists – you will be able to top up your payments via a phone app to increase your time limit, and the same app will also advise drivers of the nearest vacant parking bay.

Not sure how you’re meant to use that last feature, as you’re technically not meant to use your phone while you’re driving, right? Maybe they expect your passenger to use it on your behalf…

The first of the new metres were installed at Bundall’s Evandale precinct last week, with the rest to roll out in the coming months.

You’ve been warned!

The Meddler

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