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Author Topic: New infrastructure at Melksham station  (Read 647 times)
bobm
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« on: July 26, 2020, 08:49:16 am »

GWR have been doing some recycling.

Recently new departure screens were installed at Chippenham replacing the old orange dot matrix versions.    Some of these have now found a home at Melksham.   A double sided display is on the platform with a summary screen facing towards the car park.



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infoman
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« Reply #1 on: July 26, 2020, 04:20:20 pm »

Nice one.
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rogerw
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« Reply #2 on: July 26, 2020, 08:27:37 pm »

It may well be the way teh camrea has caught a scrolling message, but all Chippenham stops appear to be omitted  Huh
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grahame
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« Reply #3 on: July 26, 2020, 08:59:04 pm »

It may well be the way teh camrea has caught a scrolling message, but all Chippenham stops appear to be omitted  Huh

Just the scrolling - it's a darned awkward thing to capture on camera.   It also uses the those lights/lamps which flash at quite a high frequency so you only get part of the wording.
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grahame
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« Reply #4 on: July 28, 2020, 09:13:12 pm »

New car parking system too ... When you grow passenger numbers at a station from 3,000 per annum to 75,000 per annum, things change.  A little pocket of land could be easily looked after by the environment team and cars could park there for free. But a bigger car park needs more looking after, and the landlord wants his cut, so parking charges have to be introduced.  So it is at Melksham, with car parking charging equipment and signage installed in the last couple of days.  Car parking systems differ and there seem to be a lot of notices, so I'm posting a set here for reference.

The little pocket at the station is now short term (30 minute free) parking and is ideal for people dropping off and picking up. The new (well - new here - repurposed from Chippenham) display screen beams out over those spaces so that people being dropped off can sit in the car until just before the train arrives, and drivers collecting can get a confirmation that the train is running on time (or if it's delayed, by about how long)



The new display on the platform - which complements the TV screen at the station gate and means that passengers standing all the way up and down the platform are updated if something changes ...



Here's the signage from the main car parking area:











Paying for parking is encouraged online through RingGo I understand, but I haven't spotted the number to call on any of the signs. You can pay at the machine by card (I think?) or cash - though it looks to me that it's significantly more expensive that way.  Is that really right?  Here is the machine:



Some of the print on the above images is "fine print" ... all the images above are high resolution, and if you "open image in new window" or "open image in new tab" you shoud be able to read even the smallest of text. 

Pictures of the on-platform display taken on 26th July 2020, all other pictures 28th July 2020.
« Last Edit: July 28, 2020, 09:22:21 pm by grahame » Logged

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rogerw
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« Reply #5 on: July 28, 2020, 10:12:47 pm »

I suspect that the tariff list on the machine is from its previous location and will be changed. The large notices would count in any argument, or at least carry considerable weight
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grahame
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« Reply #6 on: July 28, 2020, 10:31:12 pm »

I suspect that the tariff list on the machine is from its previous location and will be changed. The large notices would count in any argument, or at least carry considerable weight


You could be right but it's all switched on and looks up and running ... I was at the station for well less than 30 minutes though ... no need to test
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Celestial
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« Reply #7 on: July 28, 2020, 11:07:57 pm »

Apart from the inconsistency in charges, it's disappointing to see that a new machine has been installed that doesn't give change.

Also curious that the company has its correspondence address in Birmingham but is registered in Scotland!

Finally it mentions using ANPR cameras to time vehicles' length of stay. That's in the small print and could potentially trap people who sit in the car for 10 minutes before paying just before the train comes. (Assuming they are in place - it would be better if it was clear whether or not they are used.) 
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grahame
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« Reply #8 on: July 29, 2020, 08:08:01 am »

Apart from the inconsistency in charges, it's disappointing to see that a new machine has been installed that doesn't give change.

Also curious that the company has its correspondence address in Birmingham but is registered in Scotland!

Finally it mentions using ANPR cameras to time vehicles' length of stay. That's in the small print and could potentially trap people who sit in the car for 10 minutes before paying just before the train comes. (Assuming they are in place - it would be better if it was clear whether or not they are used.) 

There are bound to be questions, and I have no personal experience of the company running the parking or their system.   That's not saying anything really - I know little of parking systems and the one chosen appears to be a big international operation - https://www.smartparking.com .  I understand they have other parking, so operational staff, not far away, and I have been briefed just a little more.  The landlord is Wiltshire Council who are leasing it to TransWilts CIC who have contracted Smart Parking Ltd.

Increased car parking at Melksham Station is one element of the Melksham Station Masterplan of TransWilts, as are other ststion facilities such toilet, cafe, manned information point.  In my view, the extended car parking element was not top of the list - however, the opportunity to lease the land needed came up and potentially would not come up again for many years, so this element and the associated ones were rightly accellerated.  Better pedestrian/cycling  access to the north, bus services to connect with trains, and a train service increased to hourly are higher priority. Things can be done in parallel, so parking first may look odd and take some explaining, but nothing wrong with it.  And if marketed well, the Hub and parking  will put pressure (via increased passenger numbers) for a better service.  With the land of the "northern car park" becoming open for the public to use in a month or so, and then on a permamanet basis, it may also offer an alternative northern access - separate post to follow.

Although the signage does not give details, the new Melksham Hub website at https://melkshamhub.co.uk/car-parking/ tells us
Quote
Pay and park by phone
Parking can also be paid for using the RingGo App. RingGo is particularly handy if you need to extend your parking when a returning train is delayed or cancelled. Cheaper than incurring a parking ticket! Season Tickets are available via RingGo only. Watch here how to pay with RingGo.

That page also tells us
Quote
timeline
First phase (Southern Car Park) due 31st July 2020: 20 parking spaces including 2 EV + motorcycle spaces together with short stay and disabled parking places provided by GWR on their land adjacent to the platform.

I will bring an update on the Electric Vehicle parking in the next few days - I missed taking a look at facilities, likewise missed taking a look at the labelling of motor cycle spaces.  I am planning to include an article on the new facilities in the next MRUG newsletter - a request for contributions is out to TransWilts' CRO and I would hope to be able to simply quote their content and line.
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grahame
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« Reply #9 on: July 29, 2020, 11:29:30 am »

Apart from the inconsistency in charges ...

* Tariffs - oops - discrepancy will be resolved. I believe the sign to be right, the machine wrong
* Start date still Friday, temporary signs will be put up to say that. Still free today (if anyone dared this a.m.) and tomorrow

I have also had a curiosity of pricing pointed out ... I believe it was intented that short stays were to cost the same on weekdays and at the weekend, but it's to be a little cheaper all day at the weekend.  Contrary to that, there is no weekend rate for up to 4 hour or up to 5 hours.
* If you go up to Swindon on the 10:02 (Monday to Friday), back at 13:39, you'll pay 1.20 to park.
* If you go up to Swindon on the 10:21 on Saturday, back at 13:31, you'll pay 2.00
Odd (perhaps clever) decision not to offer the lower rates at the weekend when actually people might nip up to Swindon for a few hours.   Has the potential to be as complex as rail fares ... but then it is a railway car park  Grin Grin
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« Reply #10 on: July 29, 2020, 12:11:02 pm »

Good to see equipment reused and passengers getting information.

Talking of "information" and looking at the very first photo, perhaps a new phrase should be found to replace "in formation (Zones...)". Or was that just "train formation" being scrolled?
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Phil
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« Reply #11 on: July 29, 2020, 02:16:12 pm »


Although the signage does not give details, the new Melksham Hub website at https://melkshamhub.co.uk/car-parking/ tells us
Quote
Pay and park by phone
Parking can also be paid for using the RingGo App. RingGo is particularly handy if you need to extend your parking when a returning train is delayed or cancelled. Cheaper than incurring a parking ticket! Season Tickets are available via RingGo only. Watch here how to pay with RingGo.


I'm a Ring-Go customer and have been since it was first in place at both Chippenham and Westbury station circa 2006 (the service was replaced by another company a few years later; not as helpful or efficient as Ring-Go but no doubt more cost-effective for the operator). According to their website, they have no car parks in Melksham at present.
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bobm
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« Reply #12 on: August 01, 2020, 12:53:29 pm »

Charging was introduced for the existing car park at Melksham yesterday (with the anomaly of the differing prices on the machine resolved).

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