A decade of change – be prepared for the future

James Fildes, Bids & Proposals Manager at car park and vehicle restraint specialists Berry Systems, talks about the effects that the global pandemic has had on our industry and the challenges that it will bring…

To say that these are uncertain times is a huge understatement. COVID-19 has had a devastating impact on our world and the effects have been felt by us all – both personally and professionally – in one way or another.

These shockwaves will be felt for many years to come and we should be prepared to face a decade of change in many aspects of our daily lives. Changes already underway in our city and town centre planning will accelerate to meet new demands. Improvements need to be made to protect the environment and our safety must never be taken for granted.

With almost half a century of experience in building car park environments, we’ve seen lots of change over the years. This knowledge puts us in the driving seat when it comes to being able to assess the market and to evaluate the direction that it’s going.


We launched the Car Park Design Advisory Service (CP-DAS) to provide expert advice, guidance and information to architects, developers and planners, to ensure that their projects are future proof and equipped to manage the changes that are coming.

Changing landscape

During lockdown, the highways and byways have been practically empty and town centres deserted. As restrictions are eased and more and more people start to go back to work, the roads will soon return to normal. However, the same cannot be said for our high streets.

Town centre shopping has been on the decline for many years now. An increase in online ordering and out-of-town retail outlets has seen more and more shops close for business and the lockdown has put another nail in the coffin.

A careful balance will have to be struck by town planners for the future. Without the requirement for so many shops in our town centres, buildings will need to be repurposed and it’s likely that more of these will be used for urban living and non-retail, leading to a change in traffic requirement and more flexible parking facilities.


Detailed consideration has to be given to how these buildings will be used, in both the short term and long term, and initial designs will need to reflect this.

Future proofing projects right from the start will ensure that the buildings constructed now are flexible enough to offer solutions to issues that may arise in years to come. Involving Berry System’s Car Park Design Advisory Service early on in the project means we can help model your current requirements and guide you on future proofing the infrastructure for changing demands.

Environmentally friendly

One positive that we can take from the pandemic is the effect that the lockdown has had on the environment. We’ve all seen the footage of cleaner seas and clearer skies – we need to learn lessons from this.

The number of cars on our roads has risen by 49 percent over the last 25 years, to approximately 32.5 million. Predictions estimate that if growth continues at the same pace, we could have 46.9 million cars on British roads by 2043.

However, the UK government is taking strong steps to counter the effect this rise will have on the environment, with plans to ban the selling of new petrol, diesel or hybrid cars from 2035 at the latest.

It’s vital that the car parking facilities we build today reflect the coming rise in electric vehicle use. Adding a few token chargers now will not cater for future requirements and this needs to be factored in to plans.


Technology moves at a rapid rate. The innovative, environmentally friendly products that we are developing now at Berry Systems will be in common use in a few years, enabling buildings to utilise integrated solar power systems to provide clean energy to charge electric vehicles.

CP-DAS is perfectly positioned to advise on these technological advances and how to incorporate them into your projects, ensuring the facilities you build today are prepared to provide the solutions for tomorrow.

Safety first

One thing that definitely won’t change in the future is that safety will always be the most important factor of any development and is at the heart of everything we do at Berry Systems.

We are passionate about meeting and surpassing Health & Safety specifications and CP-DAS ensures our customers benefit from the same exact standards in meeting appropriate legislation.

Safety standards for both vehicles and pedestrians are constantly being updated and refined and we monitor these carefully to ensure all regulations are met and to help predict future changes.


Our surveying service provides precise and comprehensive reporting, detailing all recommendations and costings, while our state-of-the-art testing facilities ensure all products and projects meet the most stringent standards of compliance.

Change is inevitable, but by learning the lessons of the past and being clever about how we approach the future, change should be for the better. We provide CP-DAS to ensure that your projects are designed to fully benefit from change.


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