NCP has been chosen for a 10 year deal to take on the operation, management and marketing of all parking facilities for Grand Central, Birmingham’s new retail and transport hub which is due to open in September 2015.
The contract will see NCP operate a premium car parking service aimed primarily at Grand Central’s retail users – with each of the floors linked to the new flagship John Lewis store that has been built at the centre.
The partnership creates a new model for retail car parks as NCP has secured the site on a fixed-rate basis, with the undertaking that the focus for all parties will be on the quality of the service delivered over the profits that the car park operations will deliver.
The car park itself offers shoppers (as well as travellers using Birmingham’s Grand Central Station) 448 wide bays – particularly focused on family users for the space.
The new site will also offer the latest customer-focused payments facilities, including Automatic Number Plate Recognition so those who sign up to link payments to their registration number can get automated payments when they park. This sits alongside [a mobile payments solution and] standard pay-on-foot ticketed parking.
Technology underlying the charging and payments will enable pre-booked parking from early 2016 following the likely surge in demand at opening and in the run up to the Christmas season.
The system could also allow future dynamic pricing innovations to be introduced, including demand-based pricing or emissions based pricing using data from the DVLA. Although there are no plans to introduce dynamic pricing at this stage, the Grand Central site has been built to be “future proof”.
Lee Holland, Property Director at NCP said:
This is a landmark development for NCP and is a clear demonstration to the market of our ability to design, develop and deliver a premium retail car parking offer. The Grand Central development as a whole – and the redeveloped Palisades Shopping centre in particular – have set out to become a leading retail and travel hub for the whole region. That means we’ve invested in a car parking property that reflects its values as, for many customers, we will create their first experience of the centre as a whole. We’re very much of the belief that, by working closely with property owners, developers, retailers themselves, we’ve been part of a partnership team that has worked hand-in-hand to create an overall experience – whether in parking, retail or public transport – that is consistently premium and puts the customer first throughout.
Richard Brown, Development Director at Grand Central said:
Many of our customers will be taking advantage of our car parking facilities during their visit to our premium shopping and dining destination, so it was imperative that we partnered with an organisation which demonstrated a smooth operation and quality environment. Therefore it was evident that NCP was a perfect choice for us.