ANPR: The Answer to Car Park Challenges in Malaysia

3 minutes read


 Aisyah Basar

In Malaysia, car parks are an essential component of the city’s infrastructure, meeting the rising need for parking driven by the country’s rapid urbanisation and motorization. They can be found in a variety of places, including shopping malls, residential areas and many more. Systems for managing parking lots can be manual or automated. Manual systems require an operator to issue tickets and collect payments, whereas automated systems use machines or electronic payments. However, with the advancement of modern technology, car park operators often find themselves in difficult situations affecting the area’s security, efficiency, cost, and convenience, making their tasks complicated.  This can all be avoided with the help of ANPR. What is ANPR? 

Automatic Number Plate Recognition, commonly known as ANPR, is a powerful camera system that automatically captures and identifies the licence plates of vehicles, be it for residential car parks, commercial parking areas, drive thrus and even toll plazas. Its high accuracy and reliability is definitively great for improving and solving challenges that are being faced by the management.

Here’s a brief on how ANPR works : 

  1. ANPR cameras are usually installed at the entrance and exit of parking areas and barrier gates of toll booths to photograph registration plates as they pass. 
  2. Afterwards, an AI programme analyses these images, reading the licence plate numbers and cross-referencing them against a database of vehicles. 
  3. The system will provide information based on the result depending on where and the purpose of the ANPR camera that is being used.

Car Park Challenges in Malaysia

Despite the presence of security guards and technological advancements, there are still a number of challenges that are being faced by car park management. The challenges includes:

1. Congestion inside and at the entrance of the car park

Due to the constant increasing of vehicles, the amount of parking spots in carparks are getting more limited each day. This results in congestion inside carparks as people drive slowly as they search around for spots. Additionally, it takes time for individuals to enter and leave the parking area due to the manual recording and registration of vehicles entering and leaving the area. Aside from that, the lack of real time information and poor traffic flow design may cause unnecessary circling and increase waiting time for spots which only makes traffic worse. 

2. Lack of safety and security

In Malaysia, many parking lots lack adequate security measures like CCTV cameras or guards to keep an eye on the area. Because of the lack of surveillance, it is easier for criminals to steal, break into homes, or engage in other illegal activities without being noticed or stopped. Vehicles entering and exiting the area cannot be tracked due to the lack of camera system. The safety of the carpark becomes compromised as there is no database and system that is controlling the carpark and the vehicles coming in and out of the area.

3. Payment methods that are not efficient

The payment methods for commercial car parks are not efficient and convenient to visitors. Some use a manual payment method and some use a ticketing system where people have to line up to pay for their parking before leaving. This is an issue as it takes time to complete the payment and some do not even have cash which creates extra traffic and dissatisfaction amongst visitors.

How ANPR can help solve the challenges faced

1. ANPR to improve traffic and avoid congestion

Traffic flow and parking lot congestion can be reduced by using ANPR. For instance, ANPR can track vehicles in real time, allowing authorities to keep an eye on both the movement of cars entering and leaving the region as well as the movement of cars inside parking lots. Additionally, ANPR can be used to monitor parking spaces, making it quicker for drivers to find parking and reducing traffic from vehicles driving around in circles looking for parking spots. This will ensure that every vehicle entering the area receives a parking spot and aid with crowd control.

2. ANPR to improve safety and security

ANPR can be used to control entry to parking lots by recording the licence plate numbers of arriving vehicles and cross-checking them against a pre-registered list of authorised vehicles. Unauthorised access can be prevented, enhancing overall safety and security, by denying entry to unauthorised vehicles or reporting them for further examination. Not only that, the movement of vehicles inside the parking area can be monitored using ANPR. The licence plate numbers of vehicles entering, leaving, and moving around the parking lot can also be recorded by ANPR cameras, generating a record of vehicle actions. This information can be utilised to spot any suspicious or out-of-the-ordinary behaviour, like loitering or car theft, allowing for quick response and improving security measures.

3. Enhance payment system using ANPR

ANPR can be used to make the carpark payment process better and even faster. Incorporating ANPR with contactless payment systems enables the public to pay for parking fees without using tickets or payment machines. ANPR cameras can record the licence plate numbers of vehicles entering and leaving, and the parking costs can be calculated automatically based on the length of stay. The user’s preferred contactless payment method, such as credit/debit cards, e-wallets, or online payment platforms, can then be used to complete the transaction, making it quick, simple, and seamless.

Tapway VehicleTrack  

The demand for ANPR in car parks is higher than ever as it provides various advantages to people and can help overcome carpark challenges in Malaysia.Tapway VehicleTrack specialises in identifying vehicles supported by deep learning technology and computer vision. 

Our VehicleTrack is excellent at tracking vehicles entering and exiting parking lots because it harnesses the power of ANPR for vehicle identification. Not only that, our solution does more than just identify vehicles by their licence plates, brand, and colour; it also classifies vehicles into several categories, such as their brands. This as a result, helps carpark managements become better and overcome the challenges faced. 

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