Published: 16:33, 18 June 2019
| Updated: 18:07, 18 June 2019
Ticketless car parking is set to launch in Thanet with the council trialling whether to roll out the scheme across the district.
The automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) system has been installed at Trinity Square in Margate.
It will be the first car park on the Isle to feature the technology where drivers pay for their parking at the end of their stay without taking a timed ticket on arrival.
Thanet District Council says the launch next Monday (June 24) is the start of a pilot to test how the system affects motorists using its managed car parks.
A spokesman confirmed there are "no plans to extend the system" across the district at this stage until the end of the trial run at Trinity Square but officers will monitor the success.
As part of the changes, drivers will be able to park in the car park free for 10 minutes to allow drop offs and pick up prescriptions from the nearby Limes Medical Centre.
"The system being piloted has many benefits for car park users: paying at the end of your stay; only for the time you've used; the ability to pay by card; plus the option to set up automatic payments if you are a regular user of the car park," said a council spokesman.
"Monitoring Trinity Square throughout the pilot will help us establish whether or not residents and visitors would benefit from it being rolled out further."
The council says it has spoken to car park users and used various research measures to pick the ideal place to carry out the trial picking Trinity Square to provide the best data to evaluate the scheme's success in the pilot.
A camera reads the vehicle registration plate at the car park entrance and exit which is logged in the system and the payment amount calculated when drivers punch in their details at the end of their stay.
ANPR digital parking was installed in Canterbury earlier this year but has faced some teething problems in the city.
Theatre-goers were left queuing in the cold to pay for their parking in April as confused visitors struggled to work out the new payment machines.
But city council spokesman Rob Davies says the scheme has been an "overwhelming success" for Canterbury.
Blue badge holders will need to register their vehicle on the system to continue to be able to park for free.
For more information or to register a blue badge visit the Thanet District Council website or visit the Gateway Margate with your Blue Badge or a photograph of both sides of the badge.
More by this authorMatt Leclere