Galveston, TX, Police Dept. Uses Pay-by-Plate Enforcement Solution
Officials said the parking system has allowed the city to introduce an accurate and efficient means to enforce parking with little to no impact on the existing infrastructure of the Galveston Seawall, a highly frequented tourist destination.
Over the years, visitors parked for free. Paid parking was introduced on the Seawall in 2013, and through a campaign aimed at educating the public, was successfully received.
Severe weather such as hurricanes pose a real risk for the city. Add to this concerns about disturbing the historic Seawall’s natural facade with additional parking equipment, and mobile phone payments appeared to be the most accommodating solution for the city, residents and tourists.
A Plate-Based Integrated Solution
Galveston is using pay-by-plate enforcement software to interface with a mobile parking app. All transactions are associated with a license plate, which is then scanned for enforcement by the license plate recognition (LPR) cameras.
Galveston police-edition SUVs are fully equipped with LPR cameras, and with an in-vehicle laptop running LPR software scanning up to three plates
“With the ticketing component embedded in the LPR software, we are issuing a ticket within seconds of getting a hit,” Officer Sean Migues said. “The ticketing and LPR cross-reference plate data seamlessly since they are one-in-the-same system.”
Multiple Ways to Take Advantage
of LPR Technology
Officials said Galveston has positioned itself as one the only cities in North America with a vision to leverage LPR in a manner that is both unique and creative to maximize the benefits and realize the full potential of this technology.
This includes time enforcement, paid parking rights, criminal investigation, permits, disaster preparedness and border security. The Police Department is employing a mix of applications in plate-based enforcement, demonstrating that with ingenuity, LPR technology can play an indispensable role in a city’s operations.
The LPR software, which can run on multiple platforms, including tablets and laptops, is part of the same software used for e-ticketing on Android or Windows operating systems. All data captured with LPR are attached to the ticket record and can be transferred in real-time and managed using a “cloud-based” infrastructure or installed locally on servers.
“We were presented with a few options when deciding on which parking system to implement,” Migues said. “Eventually, we settled on a pay-by-phone-by-plate system, because it was the best fit for the unique requirements of this tourist region.
“It’s really a win for both the taxpayers and the Police Department, because we now have an efficient and sustainable parking solution well-suited to the Seawall ecosystem,” he said.
[Sources: gtechna, 3M, PayByPhone, Galveston Police Department]