After being run as a virtual experience during lockdown, the Parkex tradeshow returns as a live event for the first time since June 2019. The event, created by the British Parking Association, takes place at the NEC in Birmingham between 14-16 June.
Parkex 2022 will be taking place in parallel to the Traffex tradeshow, which focusses on highways and moving traffic management solutions.
For three days the NEC’s vast exhibition areas provide ample space in which around 200 suppliers will showcase their services. The Parkex areas of the show will feature stands displaying payment systems, electric vehicle charging, data management and a range of enforcement solutions.
A Parkex Innovation Trail showcasing stands hosting a selection of groundbreaking solutions will provide visitors with a pathway around the show. A panel drawn from across the BPA will judge the inventions being shown on the trail and the winner will be announced on the third day.
In parallel to the tradeshows there are conferences during both events. The Parkex Hub is an amphitheatre set up on the exhibition floor that will be home to a line-up of speakers will talk about themes such preparing for the Parking Code of Practice, demand management, fire safety in car parks and the path to net zero.
14-16 June 2022
14 June: Policy and practice
Alison Tooze, BPA head of policy and public affairs, put together the conference programme. “The focus on day one is to cover all the pertinent issues. It’s a combination of horizon-scanning and taking stock of what has changed,” she says.
“The first session looks at key challenges, changes in demand and behaviours, and the external influences such as the way people travel and emissions reductions that are going to drive us for next few years. Demand management is explored during a session on road user charging. It’s really interesting to see how road charging may influence and drive parking policy in response to it.”
Transport minister Baroness Vere will address delegates at about themes such as skills development and the future of transport.
From midday there will be discussions about schemes such as Park Active, which sees the parking sector supporting walking and cycling. There will also be an exploration of parking’s role in ridding communities of the blight of nuisance vehicles.
The afternoon will also address public safety and wellbeing issues, with a focus on fire risk in multi-storey car parks and ways of preventing suicide in car parks.
15 June: Public and private parking
Day two at the Parkex Hub considers both private and public sector needs. The focus for the morning will be on the Parking Code of Practice and the regulatory changes affecting the private parking sector.
“There are two sessions during the morning,” explains Tooze. “One is focussed on the impact of the new code and some legal perspectives. The other will have a really diverse panel who’ll be getting together to talk about all aspects of what the Parking Code of Practice means to the sector.”
Meanwhile, BPA public sector members are invited to attend a Local Authority Summit which will discuss the regulatory changes they are facing, as well as giving them the chance to connect with key stakeholders and peers from across the UK.
“We want to give our local authority members the opportunity to come together to collaborate on areas of interest and to present, discuss and debate some of the most important aspects of the work that they do,” says Tooze.
The afternoon brings the private and public sectors back together with sessions including the importance of data in improving customer. “This session will look at the fundamentals of our role in the EV fuelling sphere. Should we be a primary EV charging source or not? This is a chance to try to take ownership of the issue and explore our place in it,” says Tooze.
There will then be a discussion about how to create a more diverse and inclusive parking sector, with the Women in Parking initiative rounding off the day with a panel debate.
Women in Parking will be holding a drinks reception, offering delegates a chance to mingle at the end of the day.
16 June: Parking people
The final day sees the Parking Hub focus on training and skills development.
Tooze concludes: “Day three focusses on the most important asset we have, people. How do we attract people from all backgrounds, genders, and ages into parking, and how do we retain them and provide opportunities for them to progress?
“The hugely important issue of officer welfare will also be discussed. The title of this session is ‘It’s not just part of the job’ and that really highlights that we need to move on from abuse being accepted as part and parcel of a role.”
Parkex 2022 is free to attend.
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