Birmingham’s NEC is undergoing major summer improvement works, which include the introduction of a new car parking option, although a hike in standard car park rates is likely to be less popular.
Customer research, the NEC revealed, showed visitors and organisers had highlighted the need for new signage to enable them to better navigate the site, as well as to arrive and depart quickly and simply.
As part of a £40m investment over a seven-year programme, the NEC will revamp its car park facilities and pricing structure to provide a hassle-free customer experience. This will include guaranteed ’NEC Express’ parking close to the event and designated ’Exhibitor Advantage’ parking for exhibitors. There will also be an increase in the cost of standard parking from £8 to £10, and disabled parking areas will undergo a significant refurbishment as well as introducing a charge for disabled parking.
The summer works will cost more than £2m and will also include replacing Hall Two’s heating and ventilation units, security upgrades, recovering the LG Arena’s roof and work on the flooring in many of the halls.
“We conducted visitor, organiser, contractor, promoter and exhibitor surveys last year, which gave us the opportunity to really hear what our customers wanted from us as a venue,” says MD at the NEC, Kathryn James. “In response, we have focused our efforts on making significant improvements to our site.
“We acknowledge that it is difficult for visitors to accept price rises, but these changes are needed in order to make these investments to ensure our venue offers customers a great experience. It is also about offering customers more choice, with a variety of parking offers now available including the new pre-booked option.We’ve revamped our parking offer to include two dedicated visitor and exhibitor parking products, which will guarantee a parking space no matter what time they arrive.”
In addition to this, from September the NEC will implement contactless payment in its car parks.
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