India, Santa Lucia, and UK cities hold Smart Parking Trials


India, Santa Lucia, and UK cities hold Smart Parking Trials

Government entities in many cities and nations have realized the need to implement smart parking solutions to ensure traffic is reduced and citizens have convenient parking options. They have taken different steps such as installation of smart meters. Some of those steps include implementing solutions on trial basis. Governments have been conducting trials and then making decisions on whether they want to continue with the systems. 

The global smart parking market
is expected to reach $11.55 billion by 2025.

Technological advancements have helped these governments to implement various solutions and offer added convenience. The implementation of smart parking is rising around the world. According to a report published by the research firm Allied Market Research, the global smart parking market is expected to reach $11.55 billion by 2025. Following are some of the activities taking place in the industry:

Governments have been taking various measures to break traffic gridlocks and implementing technology for achieving their objectives. The trial-run of a smart parking system has begun in Bengaluru, India. According to the BBMP Commissioner BH Anil Kumar, the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) has planned to install smart parking lots across the city for 10,000 two-wheelers and 3,300 four-wheelers. The charges have been decided by BBMP and Rs. 30 will be charged for first 50 minutes of parking and then users need to pay Rs. 30 more for each hour onwards. Users need to make payments through cashless modes. 

The charges must be paid within five minutes of parking through a parking meter or a mobile app. Kumar added that they have installed dynamic signage, in addition to one meter and rain shelter for transactions. A patrol vehicle will be assigned for supervision of facilities along with a control booth that has CCTV-cameras linked up. This arrangement had been made for prevention of theft. This trial will help the authorities to determine if this set up can be continued on the permanent basis. 

Installation of parking meters around the city helps provide convenience for customers. Saint Lucia’s government has decided to install smart parking meters. Castries Mayor Peterson Francis signed an agreement with Smart Park, a firm that offers smart parking meters. The Government of Saint Lucia approved and sanctioned the plan for installation of parking meters around the city. This plan aims to reduce traffic across the city. Francis highlighted that Smart Park will work according to the plans for parking terminals. Moreover, it would add a feature for making payments through mobile phones.

Sean Steele, the Managing Director of Smart Park, outlined that the company aims to offer ease in usability with smart parking solutions. All the citizens of Saint Lucia will have an access to these solutions and they will be inexpensive, as well. Steele added that users do not need to have a smartphone for using the system. Its attributes enable them to park safely along with offering ease in starting and restarting parking sessions. Its solution offers a cost-effective operation in comparison to parking meters. Moreover, there is no maintenance for the system, which in turn, offers greater revenue generation. 

Riding on the wave of advanced technology and determining the need to reduce traffic, Oxford’s government will conduct a trial for smart meters in the city. These meters will let users pay through smartphone app or credit card. According to Police Chief John Jones, there are two major reasons for the change. Citing these reasons, he stated that times have changed and so as technology. Replacements for coin-operated meters are less available as companies have been more frequently opting smart meter technology. In addition, people seem to prefer parking lots that enable them use apps and credit cards for payment. 

The meters utilized in this trial will be provided by the IPS Group Inc., a firm based in San Diego. Jones outlined that there will be no cost incurred to the city by the trial. The city will gain the revenue from meters as the trial proceeds. A discussion regarding an increase in prices is ongoing as the city staff recommends the charges should be changed from .50 cents per hour to $1 per hour. This is due to two reasons. One involves an upgrade of infrastructure and another is the credit card transaction fees involved. Jones added that the council is expected to vote on this new system after the end of the trial period. 

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Pratik Kirve is writer, blogger, and sport enthusiast. He can be reached through

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