Page last updated at 12:49 GMT, Monday, 14 December 2009

City starts iPhone parking scheme

Parking machines have been upgraded to accept payment by iPhone

Motorists with iPhones are now able to use them to pay for parking under a new scheme in Gloucester.

Special software has been installed as part of an upgrade of all of the city's on-street pay-and-display machines.

Users set up an account with Wiltshire-based MiPermit and use their iPhones to choose where and for how long to park.

A Gloucestershire County Council spokesman said it was believed to be the world's first ever iPhone parking application.

Some cities in the UK already offer a parking payment service using standard mobile phones.

'More reliable'

Cabinet member for the environment, Councillor Stan Waddington said: "Most of us lead very busy lives and there's nothing worse than when you've found a space to park, the pay-and-display machine doesn't work and you waste time having to hunt around for one that does.

"Hopefully, these new machines should make that a thing of the past because we want people to enjoy coming to Gloucester."

Parking manager, Jim Daniels, said: "The current stock is particularly old and prone to breakdown.

"The new machines, apart from being far more reliable, will all be solar-powered so saving on costs and improving the environment as well.

"They will also be networked and will be able to tell us when and where there is a problem, which will help reduce maintenance costs."

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