Amsterdam: fair parking charges scheme

The municipal coallition agreement states that the current parking tarrifs will not decrease until 2014. The city will however investigate how paid parking can be made more userfriendly. Real Time Parking (RTP) is an interesting aspect of this approach, applied to off-street facilities. Where off-street parking facility users used to pay for each hour started, the RTP system will calculate costs per block of eight minutes. Hourly units used to cost 4 euros, the eight minute blocks cost 50 cents.

Over the past decade, the tarrifs of off-street parking have increased to the level of on-street parking, although practice shows that there needs to be a tarrif-difference to attract parking volume in off-street facilities. The RTP will make off-street parking more attractive, moneywise.

In practical terms, two garages will be equipped to run RTP. Old and depreciated parking payment machines had to be replaced. The RTP scheme will cost the municipality loss of revenue. The municipality has taken up this loss in its annual budget. It is expected that over time the loss of revenue per client will be compensated by a higher occupation level.

Amsterdam is using the revenue of parking mainly to improve public space with regards to traffic and transport. The parking policy raises per year about €130 million. 40 to 45 million is spent on management and enforcement, €10 million goes to the general budget. This leaves €75 to 80 million that is spent on an accessible, safe and liveable city. Twenty years of parking policy have lead in this way to 400 kilometers of separate bicycle tracks, P+R facilitues and safer crossroads.

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