Houston Rolls Out New Parking Meters with Pay-by-Plate from T2 Systems
As part of a five-year plan to replace aging meters, the ParkHouston program is introducing new multi-space stations with enhanced speed and capabilities. The meters have been phased in, with 250 installed in February and March. The meters – the T2 Systems Digital Luke II multi-space paystations – employ cutting-edge technology designed to make parking easier, as well as to enhance operations for the city.
Houston’s purchase of the Luke II paystations, a significant contract for T2, was approved by the City Council on Oct. 15, after the city tested several in trial form. The city manages 9,200 parking spaces with the help of the multi-space paystations.
The Luke II meter provides a better experience, the company said, because it lets parkers associate their payment with their license plate number. With pay-by-plate, parkers no longer have to walk back to their cars to put a receipt on the dashboard.
“This is really going to improve the customer experience,” said Maria Irshad, Assistant Director of ParkHouston. “Customers will now just be able to get on their way after paying for parking.”
In the rollout, teams of ambassadors walked the areas where new meters were in place to show parkers how to pay-by-plate. Also, parkers who use a mobile app to pay are now able to extend their parking session via text message. This is another service that “will take the aggravation out of parking,” Irshad said.
“We were proud to partner with Houston, continuing our 10-year relationship with them, to make parking easier for [drivers] and management easier for the city,” said Chris Chettle, EVP of T2 Product & Manufacturing. “We are always looking for ways to augment our customers’ parking operations, and [this] provided us a great opportunity.”
“Our meters were working for us. They were just getting old, as any technology does,” Irshad said. “When we purchased them in 2005, we were still using flip-phones. That’s how quickly technology changes. We needed to upgrade. At the end of the day, parking meters are a piece of technology and need to be refreshed as such.”