The Impacts of Automated Enforcement Technologies on the Parking Industry


By Heidi Wingate, CAPP

Automated enforcement solutions are becoming more important as the parking industry experiences a technology revolution. By improving efficiency, simplifying operations, and strengthening enforcement, these technologies—which include license plate recognition (LPR) systems and sensor-based enforcement—benefit parking operators.

LPR systems have become popular as a solution for parking enforcement. These systems can automatically collect license plate information, compare it with records of past payments or parking permits, and then issue penalties to non-compliant parkers.

Another new development is sensor-based enforcement, which uses electronic devices to track non-compliant parkers. These sensors track which cars sit still for long periods of time, detect when a vehicle has overstayed its allotted time, notify the appropriate authorities, and send out automatic notifications.

Data analytics is another key factor that’s driving this growth. Now that big data is available, parking lot managers may use it to allocate spaces better, anticipate peak demand, and streamline operations. Customers have an improved parking experience, and data-driven tactics simplify administrative tasks.

Parking operators can drastically increase revenue using automated enforcement systems as they improve the effectiveness of parking enforcement operations, decrease the expenses of human enforcement, and raise compliance with parking regulations. In addition, these technologies can improve the way parking data is collected, which means we can learn more about parking trends and behavior.

Initial rollout costs and privacy issues are two of the challenges linked with technologies utilized for automated enforcement. Despite these obstacles, the possible long-term benefits outweigh them. Parking operators should vet enforcement agencies prior to entering into an agreement to ensure that the level of service their team will provide to both the operator and parkers filing disputes is acceptable. As the parking management sector continues to expand, automated enforcement solutions are expected to play an increasingly important role.

Heidi Wingate, CAPP, is the Area Director in Jacksonville, Florida, for Elite Parking Services of America, Inc. She can be reached at