This is becoming a common sight across Brighton – parking meters being removed and drivers instead being encouraged to pay by phone or app.
The positive view is that it’s encouraging use of digital – something at which Brighton tends at the forefront.
However, more concerning is the impact removal of parking meters has on the less able.
Sure, it makes scrabbling around for a couple of quid in change a thing of the past, but consider this.
When a parking meter is removed, where do the details of how to pay get displayed: not at pedestrian/car height, unfortunately, but on signs around 8ft high which are not always very easy to read.
Also, what happens if you don’t have a smartphone or a phone at all? Are we becoming so increasingly cashless that money for a parking meter is now considered unnecessary?
And walking to another meter? There are plenty of disabled drivers out there who will find it very difficult to walk to the nearest meter.
More likely is that Brighton & Hove Council is cutting costs, starting with the need to empty parking meters.
I’d be interested to see what research the council has done before making this decision.
It may be that it’s removing only ‘low use’ meters, but is the cost saving really worth it at the expense of the taxpaying customer?