Big Ideas for Smaller CitiesĀ 


Big Ideas for Smaller CitiesĀ 

For small cities, the upfront cost of new equipment can be daunting. Not to mention the hours upon hours of labor required for sufficient training, equipment installation and the implementation of process improvements. It is important to evaluate all your options and make an informed decision from the start.

Having a detailed plan is key, as well as focusing on a phased implementation strategy. At PIE 2018, we will discuss the innovative tactics that will allow you to work within a limited budget. The session will challenge you to design your ideal parking system and then strategize how to successfully implement it.

The first step is identifying your unique “pain points” and strategizing how to solve them. You may not be able to implement all solutions simultaneously, but by prioritizing the key issues, you can start to create an effective road map to implement “smart” solutions. Always be sure to involve your stakeholders in the process when defining priorities. Also, many of your pain points may be connected, which means that implementing even one new smart technology system can often solve several of the frustrating issues plaguing your city.

Next, we’ll discuss the variables necessary for projecting potential revenues and expenditures and walk through a simple forecasting model to demonstrate how small tweaks to these variables can have a significant impact. We will define and evaluate different types of rate structures and discuss both the pros and cons of each.

We also will dive into the cost of different technology solutions and discuss upfront as well as on-going fees. This allows us to estimate the most cost-effective solution to implement overtime. Budgeting and determining when you will see a return on your investment are key. This also is very helpful to know when determining your rate structure so you can cover your costs without being overly aggressive with your parking rates.

Finally, we will end the session with some creative ideas on how to finance your new equipment purchase. Companies are changing, and big corporations such as Microsoft and Adobe are having users finance equipment monthly, rather than having to bear the entire cost upfront.


The first step is identifying your unique “pain points” and strategizing how to solve them.



Eliminating the large upfront costs often allows solutions to be implemented faster, so that increased efficiency and cost savings can be realized much sooner. Getting creative with how you finance that new equipment you’ve been eyeing is going to allow your small city to pursue big ideas.

See you at the Parking Industry Exhibition 2018 March 26-29 in Chicago. Log on to for more information.

Julie Dixon is Founder, President and Principal Consultant of Dixon Resources Unlimited. Contact her at

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Julie Dixon
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