Can Mutispace Parking Meter Make Vehicle Parking Safer and Easier?

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Finding a safe space to park a vehicle on streets, malls, and public spaces is quite challenging. The typical parking method doesn’t allow users to see which place is free and safe to park their vehicle. Even the parking spaces charge more for a short duration. Is there any alternative that can make vehicle parking easier and safer? Yes. A multi-space parking meter is the best option for your tragic parking situation.

Let’s dive in and learn the features and innovations that make this option appealing for parking.

What Features Make Multispace Parking Meters Smart?

Multi-Space Parking is the best-automated parking meter solution when looking for an alternative to your parking facility. From providing parking space to helping with easy payment, this automated facility has amazing features that make it smart enough to consider for a multi-space parking option.

Easy User Interface

One of the most appealing features of a parking meter is its user-friendly and intuitive design. This feature includes easy controls, such as buttons and payment inputs. Some leading-edge integrations in parking meter interfaces that make it popular are touch, motion-activated LED lights, full-audio display screens that give instructions or advertisements, and sleek capacitive keyboards for Pay-by-Plate meters.

Multiple Payment Options

This multi-space parking meter can accept multiple payment options depending on your chosen design. It is capable of accepting payment options such as credit or debit cards, coins, mobile pay, validation code, or license-plate-based parking validations.

Advanced Designs

Mutispace parking meters are available with numerous advanced designs such as solar-panel, hard-wired powered operations, security measures such as the type of material, and lock technologies used for better performance in extreme weather conditions and against vandalism with the aesthetic appeal of the system unit.

Better Software Capabilities

In the core design, the central software should provide easy-to-use statistical and financial reporting as well as generate alarms whenever a device has a problem. Advanced systems will include dashboards, graphs, and charts to integrate or work with third-party platforms such as mobile payment applications. It will also provide analytical capabilities for past and future trend analysis.

Cost-effectiveness

Parking meters are an inexpensive and compelling solution for paid parking facilities. However, the cost differs from advanced designs, suppliers, and technology models of multi-space parking meters.

As many countries are accepting the multi-space parking meter, the U.S. has welcomed it too. Today, about five million parking meters are installed and they are collecting an average of $1 per day for six days per week, which is about $1.565 billion per year.

However, along with the benefits, there are some challenges for countries like Colombia, which are experiencing payment problems with multi-space parking meters,  which eventually led the Columbia Public Works Department to stop the multi-space parking meters trial period on Ninth Street between Broadway and Locust of the Columbia.

What Technologies are incorporated in Multispace Parking Meter?

The integration of advanced technologies into multi-space parking includes parking payment acceptance, monitor use, and lead enforcement.

However, as multi-space parking meters become popular in many countries, innovations are increasing rapidly.

Single-space Meters

This is one of the oldest types of parking asset and has traditionally been very limited in its ability to adjust prices, accept multiple payment options, gather revenue reports, and monitor utilization; however, intelligent single-space meters have been retrofitted into existing meter housings and accept both credit card and coin payments.

These advanced meters are solar-powered and wirelessly networked. These allow real-time reporting on system failure and support dynamic pricing. Further, they can also be integrated with pay-by-phone systems and vehicle-detection sensors.

The benefits of single-space meters are that they can pay at the space rather than at a central payment location and give a visual reminder to users that they must pay to park.

In 2014, (Washington, DC) the District Department of Transportation (DDOT) launched a parking program. In this, all single-space meters are upgraded to accept credit cards, and various parking-space occupancy detection technologies were incorporated, including sensors, fixed cameras, and movable cameras.

Multi-space Meters

Advancements in multi-space meters represent a broad variety of payment and technology options. Multi-space meters are widely used with both on-street and off-street parking and enable pay by space, pay, and display, and pay by the license plate payment options.

While each of these has unique advantages and applications, all are capable of accepting payments such as coin and credit card, real-time reporting, and dynamic pricing while reducing the confusion associated with single-space meters.

In the ‘Tolling and Pricing Program‘ of the U.S. Department of Transportation, they have mentioned the contemporary approaches to parking pricing. This program includes the technologies incorporated in multi-space parking meters for easy payment.

Specific payment options associated with multi-space parking meters are:

  • Pay and display

In this parking option, a user needs to walk to a central pay station, make their payment, and place a receipt on the vehicle’s dashboard. This option allows enforcement personnel to determine quickly if a vehicle is in violation of time limits and, as long as time remains on users’ receipts, they can move within a parking district without making additional payments. A disadvantage is inconvenient to return users’ vehicles after paying. Also, if a pay-and-display station is out of service, multiple parking spaces are impacted, resulting in a loss of revenue.

  • Pay by space

This is similar to the pay and display option, But instead of placing a receipt on the dashboard, users enter the space number associated with their parking space. With Pay by Space, complaints are reduced because users are not required to return to their vehicles. However, enforcement staff must pull reports to determine which users are violating the time limit, which slows down the enforcement process. To simplify the enforcement process, the payment system can be integrated with space sensors.

  • Pay by license plate

It is a very easy option. Users can enter their license plate number rather than entering a space number of a parked vehicle. This option allows users with remaining parking time to travel within the district (where parking meters are accessible) without paying an additional fee. The main disadvantage of it is that some users may not know their license plate number or might enter it wrong.

In-car Metres

In-car meters are small, programmable devices that hang from the rearview mirror or are placed on the dashboard. The meters are pre-loaded with funds that are deducted based on the location of a vehicle and the duration that it is parked. This meter also shows the parking rate to be charged per location. Some in-car meters incorporate Global Positioning System (GPS) cards that determine the location and charge the appropriate rate accordingly.

Pay-by-Phone

Pay-by-phone technology in multi-space parking meters allows users to pay for parking by phone, text message, or smartphone application. Users just need to preregister and provide a credit card number. It also sends text messages or other notifications to users before their defined parking time expires and allows them to add time using their phone, which helps them park vehicles beyond any existing time limits.

Pay-by-phone systems are generally privately operated and can be integrated with intelligent single-space and multi-space meters and LPR technology.

Automated Technologies for Off-street Facilities

Some parking payment technologies are specifically designed for off-street parking. This technology allows staffing at facilities and supports real-time reporting. The two primary automated technologies are discussed below.

  • Pay-on-foot allows users to acquire a parking ticket when entering a facility and complete their payment at a pay station before returning to their vehicle and exiting. At the exit, an exit verifier accepts the client’s parking ticket, confirms that the parking price has been paid, and permits the user to exit.
  • Pay-in-lane requires users to pay for parking in the exit lane of a parking facility using an automated booth. This technique can be less confusing than pay-on-foot because it allows users to keep their parking ticket in their car and does not need them to make a payment before returning to their vehicle.

LPR Technology

LPR stands for License Plate Recognition, this technology uses cameras and optical character recognition to read license plates. The systems are portable or vehicle-mountable, and they work in both daytime and low-light circumstances. Once read, the license plate is compared to a database of violations, payments, and other relevant information.

LPR also helps as an enforcement and data collection tool. This technology can also be employed with payment systems for off-street parking facilities. It also monitors vehicle occupancy and duration in both off-street and on-street facilities.

Parking Space Sensors

The sensors can be installed on the pavement, attached to single-space parking meters, or hanging from parking garage ceilings. Space sensors are utilized for law enforcement, data collection, and advising users of available parking spaces. The data can also be used to calculate occupancy rates.

What is the Future of Multispace Parking Meters?

Technology will grow more affordable, integrate better, and provide more chances for convenient payment options in the future. Cities and municipalities are anticipated to employ overlapping technologies such as parking meters, pay-by-phone, and LPR technology, resulting in greater demand for improved data integration. As a result, companies should find it easier to combine parking payment and enforcement systems.

Improvements in LPR technology should make it easier to gather and track occupancy and duration data of parked vehicles, and the way parking data is shared is also expected to alter. Online and mobile solutions that allow parkers to verify the availability and cost of parking are just starting to surface, and their market presence is expected to grow dramatically in the future.

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