By Matt Jarram, Local Democracy Reporter
Nottingham City Council has agreed to spend £187,000 on a contract to maintain its network of cameras which catch motorists breaching bus lane rules.
The local authority has decided to award a contract to Yunex Traffic, a Siemens business, for the continued maintenance and repair of Nottingham’s automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) camera network.
It will cost £187,504.73 for one year.
Under a delegated decision – which means the spending was approved outside a council meeting – the authority outlined its plans.
The council said: “We are seeking to continue existing maintenance arrangement with Siemens for the following reasons – Siemens who are the sole supplier of the camera enforcement system are the only contractor able to work on the whole system as they are the manufacturers.
“There are other systems on the market but unfortunately they are not compatible with the Siemens system that the council currently has in place.
“We could look to remove the Siemens system and replace it with a new system however the costs involved would be between £1-2 million and we would then encounter the same issue as now with the new supplier being the only company to maintain and repair the enforcement system.”
Nottingham City Council is contracting on behalf of itself and Leicester City Council for whom it operates its bus lane enforcement system under a partnership agreement.
There will be an initial additional cost implication as the quotation will include Leicester’s element of the contract. Leicester is then invoiced for its element of the contract once the deal is signed.
The cost of this years’ contract is £187,504.73 and runs between October 2021 to the end of September 2022.
The council said: “As we purchase more cameras and we have cameras falling outside their two year warranty, there will be an annual increase on the costs of maintenance of our assets of around £6,000 per camera to the contract.”
The penalty charges handed out for driving in bus lanes fund the upkeep and maintenance of the system. Fines are £60 each, but can be reduced if paid within a number of days.
The council added: “By not employing a maintenance contract we risk our network of enforcement cameras failing, this will then allow vehicles to abuse bus lanes and bus gates and park on clearways, which is also prohibited.
“This will cause slower journey times for public transport providers and other road users, this is contrary to Nottingham’s pledge ‘Let’s Keep Nottingham Moving’ and will also mean our legal commitments to Leicester City Council will also be compromised.”