Modern ways of parking payment and control
|The city of Calgary has changed the way their residents pay for parking and Cale has been centrally involved in making this change successful.
Why normal Pay&Display was not sufficient
Earlier, the City operated thousands of single space parking meters. Fees were paid with coins or with stored value chip cards and one parking meter per parking space was used. The system was expensive and not working very well, for instance due to malfunctioning meters. The city considered traditional parking terminals, but this solution was rejected for several reasons:
• Unfriendly for end users since they had to walk back to the car to display the receipt.
• Receipts not working well for convertibles and motorcycles.
• Fraudulent parking coupons are very hard to detect from outside a vehicle.
• Receipts with remaining time are being resold to new users.
• Receipts show thieves when the car owner plans to return
Ticketless is the solution
The City instead developed a new way of thinking, where the city was divided into different zones. Instead of using a paper ticket to validate the parking, the enforcement was done using the vehicle’s registration number. To facilitate this major transition, Cale has assisted by integrating Cale WebConcept, containing the payment terminal Cale WebTerminal and the backoffice system Cale WebOffice, to the city’s own system.
Registration number used for identity
Cale has provided the city with new, user friendly and solar powered payment terminals, the called CWT 2115. With its graphical display, software controlled buttons and online connection to Cale WebOffice, the terminal enables this kind of non-ticket based system. After parking in a certain zone, the end-user can use any parking terminal within the city for payment. The parker only needs to register the car in the system through entry of the zone number and the car’s registration number. Then, the end user decides the durations of the stay, and pay using coins or credit cards. The parking fee shown in the display is adjusted to the fee specific for the chosen zone.
The Cale terminals warn customers if they attempt to purchase time during parking restrictions or when payment is not required. The terminals do allow payment prior to operating hours, meaning that end user only pay for time needed.
Another feature is that the end user also has the possibility to top-up the parking time, within predefined rules for maximum stay. This can be done anywhere, not only where the car is parked.
Mobile phone payment
The city also offers mobile phone for payment as a separate service, where the end user register on the city’s website, creates an account and transfers money from a credit card. The account is connected to the cars registration number.
A new enforcement approach
For enforcement, the city operates this zone based parking system by using cars patrolling the zones. These cars are equipped with cameras that record all registration numbers in each zone with time and date stamp. It also automatically takes pictures of each car that later on can be used if there is any appeal by an end user. This means that the enforcement officers now enjoy their work in a climate controlled vehicle instead of walking around in sometimes ice cold conditions.
Synchronisation is the key
On specific hours during the day (and night) all buyers’ data in the terminals are synchronized with Cale WebOffice. In Cale WebOffice, the data is compiled and transferred to the City’s own system where it’s incorporated in the data coming from the mobile payment system.
Efficient PCN handling
The operator now has all the information needed to be able to see who has paid their fee or not. The list from the terminals and mobile payment is matched with the list from the patrolling vehicle and the operator receives a final list informing which vehicle didn’t have a properly paid/registered fee. A penalty charge notice can then be issued to violators and sent to their registration addresses together with photo evidence of the violation.
A popular system
With the new system, the city has seen increased parking capacity thanks to the removal of single spaces, a high amount of credit card purchase and pleased citizens.
Another successful installation
|DIVV is the City of Amsterdam’s department responsible for parking regulation. Annually DIVV issues 70,000 permits, sells more than 20 million parking rights by parking terminals and GSM-parking, and maintains parking directives that provides over 80,000 parking spaces.
Need to make parking more efficient
Since 2004, the City of Amsterdam has been seeking effective solutions for payment and monitoring of their parking spaces. They wanted to replace the existing parking terminals with user-friendly and cashless Pay & Display terminals, allowing mandatory input of Licence Plate Registration ID (LPR) during the purchase process of obtaining a parking right.
The parking right data was to be sent in real time to the DIVV parking right database from the parking terminal management system in order to enforce the parking rights. The enforcement would be based on an LPR checked in the centrally stored parking rights.
Cale chosen as new supplier
In early 2008, the Cale Access distributor, Schmit Parkeersystemen, was chosen as the new supplier of both terminals and back office systems. The CWT 2120, with its large colour touch screen was chosen, offering customers the best user interface possible.
Customer adapted integration
Cale has created an integration between DIVVs own main system, a parking management database, CWO and CWT. All purchases are sent in real time to DIVVs main system, where the LPRs are used to identify the active parking rights. Monitoring has become automated and much more efficient.
The LPR is used in the system only to record the public parking period start and stop times. It is anonymous and cannot be used to track a customer.
User-friendliness in focus
Cale and DIVV put a great deal of effort into developing an intuitive user interface using transitional graphics with as little text as possible. This ensures that end users only see information on the screen relevant to where they are in the parking right purchase process.
Flexible payment methods
All terminals are wirelessly (GPRS) connected to Cale WebOffice. Cale, along with the Dutch distributor Schmit Parkeersystemen, implemented an EMV level 2 card reader in each terminal. EMV is a requirement in the Netherlands. It is also an international standard for card payments. In addition, the terminal is also approved for PCI+ payments, for the national PIN-card scheme.
Customers can also pay their parking with the national electronic purse, “Chipknip”.
Plans for the future
Work to replace existing parking terminals has started in the city centre. DIVV will work its way gradually towards the city limits.
DIVV also has future aspirations to increase incentives to use environmentally friendly cars by offering a reduced fee for green cars. This will be achieved through a registration link to an online database of environmentally certified registration.