Parking of the Future


In many garages managed by Chicago-based company SP Plus nationwide, hands-free systems at the doors and mobile payments are used to “create a contactless experience,” said Jeff Eckerling, the company’s director of growth. Overall, the company said it inspected “more than two million” parking spaces at several thousand locations, including more than 70 airports.

Despite contactless technology, stay-at-home restrictions enforced more than a year ago due to the coronavirus have hurt the parking business. An empty parking lot is like a subway car without a driver, a baseball stadium without fans.

“Our entire industry, from hotels to airports and event venues, has been hit hard,” said Mr Eckerling.

Unsurprisingly, he said, New York City was among the first cities to improve parking. If you go back four months, we were almost at pre-Covid levels,” he said. “Many workers were using public transport, but it only takes a small number to get back to the office and drive, which is a real win for our business.”

The history of parking in the United States is not particularly romantic. Most reports date the earliest public garages to the early 1930s, when car ownership began to expand. Car “jockeys” He settled the matter, and the cars were usually placed on the platforms and taken to the appropriate areas.

By the 50s, a construction boom filled city centers with garages and gave people easier access to shopping and businesses. The mid-20th century also brought the introduction of multi-level garages with ramps and do-it-yourself car parks.

Some pieces of the Flash vision were in effect recently in Hoboken, NJ, where he worked with LAZ Parking in one of the company’s garages. High-tech cameras at the two entrances are programmed to read license plates to identify cars whose drivers have an online prepayment or a monthly housing contract, or simply require hourly tickets. (No need to pull one from the machine; just wave to the screen and the ticket is dealt.)


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