Engineering the perfect parking system takes a lot of initiative. Before long, several insurmountable challenges will present themselves. But the best in the business know how to overcome these challenges. First, we must understand them though.
Let’s look at six clear challenges we are facing in the development of better parking systems around the world.
- Web Access
Global web access is a dream that will perhaps one day be recognised.
But until then, we can’t always be sure that Wi-Fi is available wherever we go. The absence of freely available Wi-Fi poses several car parking barriers.
- Mobile parking apps cannot function on phones without a web connection
- Pre-booking isn’t possible without web access
- Location software will not work without mobile web access
- Electronic payments are rendered inoperable without a connection
As the internet becomes more and more accessible around the world, these issues will become negligible. But until then they remain challenging within the parking industry.
- Generational Gaps
Believe it or not, but there is a downside to super-fast-moving technology. People can’t always keep up. When something changes, some people get uncomfortable. “What was wrong with the old way?”
Since the point of upgrading a parking system is convenience, it stands to reason that this should be the ultimate goal—even for the older generation. If older people who are not technologically savvy don’t understand a new parking system, the establishment will lose out on a massive demographic.
In some ways, older people determine whether a general area is ready for advanced technology. If it’s too advanced, some areas simply aren’t ready to implement them yet. You could call this a technological delay, which is one of the challenges facing the parking industry today.
- Space Utilisation
When it comes to parking, space is everything. And I mean EVERYTHING! Unless new technology gives us the ability to use up less space when parking, it isn’t new technology. Advanced parking methods always require space. The utilisation of this space is one of the largest challenges facing parking technology.
Space Costs Money
The important thing for any establishment to remember is that every bit of space they have has the potential to accommodate a customer and generate revenue.
Fortunately, there are new developments in parking that allow for better utilisation of space, thereby allowing for more vehicles.
- A car can be robotically lifted and positioned right next to another car by a robotic valet
- Stack parking utilises the space above each car to fit more cars
- Parking lots are built upward involving complex
At this point, new technology costs a lot. While the purveyors of this technology desperately want it launched, getting to that point is expensive and time consuming.
Return on Investment
It’s not easy to sell the owners and managers of an establishment on such a huge initial investment for parking.
What they will understand is how good of a return that investment will give them. Within a significantly short amount of time, the money will have been made back and everything after that is profit.
This will be initiated by:
- Paid parking income
- The ability to park more customers
- The ability to charge higher rent due to increased consumer traffic
If the goal can be higher revenues and happier motorists, then the cost for such an investment—although high—is well worth it.
- Low Quality Parking Equipment
It takes several components to create a flowing parking system. These components work together to make parking easy, fast and convenient.
Unfortunately, many establishments try to cut costs when they start out a project like this. With two main parking components, parking barriers and parking machine pay points, quality cannot be compromised on. Here’s why.
A parking barrier must be robust and technically sound. if not, the following problems may occur:
- If the barrier is flimsy, it will not stop a large vehicle from breaking through
- If spikes are implemented at parking barriers, a malfunction could damage the tyres of motorists
- A boom malfunction may also cause significant damage to cars—at the expense of the establishment
For this reason, parking barriers must be strong, and the software that runs them should be of a high standard & reputation.
Parking Machine Pay Points
Parking pay points handle the money transactions of parking fees. If these aren’t up to scratch, they can cause a lot of disruption as well as a long line of unhappy customers.
- Trial & Error
The only way to test a parking system is to launch it.
It’s scary, but true. An advanced parking system will run into small hiccups during it’s first few months in operation.
…although motorists have been known to avoid an establishment because of an over-complicated parking system.
In the end, more parking benefits everybody. So due diligence on the side of the establishment should match the patience and understanding of motorists.