06 July 2006 | Paul Snell
Procurement is driving innovation with trials of the next generation of London parking meters.
They are the first street meters in the UK to allow payment on credit cards using chip and PIN technology.
"Partnerships in Parking" is a collaboration between six councils - Westminster, Islington, Kensington & Chelsea, Camden, Lambeth and City of London - and is funded by the London Centre of Excellence.
Ken Cole, centre director, told SM
: "It is a great example of buyers driving innovation in the market and councils saying to industry 'this is what we want'."
The meters will have a six-week trial in Soho and will also be installed in Camden. A report will be published once the trials are complete.
The councils hope to save £55 million by standardising goods such as tickets and machines.
A further 18 London boroughs are awaiting the results of the trial before deciding whether to get involved.