Tag Archives: parking industry

Member News: ParkMobile Data Shows a Slow and Steady Comeback in U.S. Cities

Parking transaction data from over 400 cities indicates that people are getting back on the roads

Atlanta, GA, – May 27, 2020 – ParkMobile, the leading provider of smart parking and mobility solutions, revealed new data today that shows increasing parking transactions in cities across the U.S. In early to mid-March, as fears of COVID-19 spread and more cases were diagnosed, cities and states shut down and people stayed at home. This caused a significant drop in the number of daily parking transactions in cities. The ParkMobile app is available in over 400 cities in the U.S., so the company’s data presents a clear view of the impact of the pandemic on consumer mobility.


Chart 1 in the infographic shows the severe drop in parking transactions as COVID-19 cases increased in March and states started to shut down. Compared to the previous month, parking transactions were down almost 95% across the country. This indicates that most non-essential workers were following the stay at home orders to help prevent spread of the virus.

Park Mobile Chart 1

In recent weeks, ParkMobile data reveals that activity is starting to gradually pick up. Cities and states are lifting some restrictions and parking transaction volume is slowly increasing on a week-to-week basis. This is a clear sign that people are going out more often. In Chart 2 in the infographic, you can see the week-over-week growth in parking volumes. It is still not clear from the data if and when things will get back to pre-COVID-19 levels.

Park Mobile Chart 2

The top 10 cities in the U.S. saw a slower rate of decline in early-to-mid March than smaller cities overall. Chart 3 in the infographic shows that the big cities hit their bottom about a week after the smaller markets. The rate of recovery for big cities has also been flatter than smaller cities because they did not initially decline as much.

park mobile chart 3

Beach communities are seeing the biggest increase in parking volume as people are looking for activities where they can be outdoors while social distancing. Chart 4 in the infographic shows that parking transactions in beach communities are outpacing those in cities. As summer approaches and the weather gets warmer, beach parking transactions should continue to increase. ParkMobile recently introduced service to the Borough of Belmar at the Jersey Shore. According to Belmar Mayor Mark Walsifer, “The Borough of Belmar wants to ensure the safety of visitors and residents. By partnering with ParkMobile to offer contactless parking payments, we are working to provide our community with a smart mobility option for anyone looking to spend time at the beach.”

park mobile chart 4

While parking volumes are picking up across the country, the way people are paying for parking is also changing. Cities are actively promoting contactless payments through apps like ParkMobile in an effort to stop people from touching the meters. Many cities are reporting that utilization of the app versus the meter has shifted heavily towards the app over the past three months. One large city reported that utilization of the app versus the meter jumped from 60% up to 80%.

In a recent move, New York City Department of Transportation launched the ParkMobile app in addition to the current ParkNYC app, also powered by ParkMobile, to give people more mobile payment options in the city. According to a recent statement from NYC DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg, “DOT is asking all New Yorkers who can to switch to Pay-By-Cell, which will reduce the need for physical cash transactions at our 14,000 parking meters. Contactless Pay-By-Cell reduces exposure risk for the public and our workforce. Please help us reduce the need to physically service parking meters and collect, sanitize, and securely store cash during this crisis.”

“It’s very clear that one of the lasting impacts of COVID-19 will be that people want more contactless payment options,” says Jon Ziglar, CEO of ParkMobile. “We’re proud that we can partner with cities to promote use of the app in order to keep people safe and protect city workers.”

ParkMobile continues to encourage people to do everything they can to prevent the spread of the virus including wearing masks, washing hands, and social distancing. The company’s headquarters in Atlanta, GA, has been closed since March 12th, and all 200 employees have been working from home since that time. The company hopes to reopen in the near future but will only do so when it is safe for employees to return.

View the full report here.


About ParkMobile 

ParkMobile, LLC is the leading provider of smart parking and mobility solutions in North America, helping millions of people easily find, reserve, and pay for parking on their mobile device. The company’s technology is used in thousands of locations across the country, including 7 of the top 10 cities as well as college campuses, airports, and stadiums. People can use ParkMobile solutions to quickly pay for on-street and off-street parking without having to use a meter or kiosk. Additionally, ParkMobile offers parking reservations at stadium venues for concerts and sporting events. Reservations are also available in metro area garages, allowing people to drive into the city without having to worry about finding parking. ParkMobile has been named to the Inc. 5000, Deloitte Fast 500, Smart Cities Connect “Smart 50,” and the Atlanta Journal Constitution’s Top Workplaces. Additionally, the company won the 2019 Stevie Awards for Most Innovative Tech Company and Best Travel App. For more information, visit ParkMobile.io or @ParkMobile on Twitter.


COVID-19 and Our Industry

COVID_19 P&M Parking IndustryCampuses have emptied out. Hospitals are busier than ever. Municipalities are trying to help communities under shelter-in-place orders. And nobody knows when airports will get back to normal.

COVID-19 has affected parking and mobility in more ways than we can count, from revenue to payroll to services to security—and essential vs. non-essential has turned out to be incredibly complicated. In this month’s Parking & Mobility, we talk with professionals from all facets of the industry about how the virus has affected their operations and their people, how they’re all reacting, and how everyone’s looking ahead to the future in the middle of it all.

Read the whole story here. And then join the conversation during an upcoming online Shoptalk  or on Forum.

COVID-19 and Our Industry

What the pandemic means for parking and mobility operations, and what professionals are doing to keep things moving.

IT’S DIFFICULT TO THINK THAT WHEN A MYSTERIOUS NEW VIRUS infected 41 people in Wuhan, China, last December, anyone could have foreseen the coming global effect. COVID-19 has dominated the news and many businesses—including parking and mobility—during the first quarter of 2020, and doesn’t show many signs of slowing down anytime soon.

First called similar to the flu, COVID-19 causes headaches, fever, body aches and chills, digestive issues, and respiratory complications that can grow into a fatal form of viral pneumonia. At press time, vaccine and treatment trials had begun but overwhelmed hospitals and medical professionals could only treat symptoms and hope for the best. Highly contagious, the virus forced virtual shutdowns of businesses, schools, and cities around the world. And those closures have had massive effects on parking and mobility, from empty garages and lots to micro-mobility service disruptions to the well-being of staff members—and all of that has rocked the industry’s economy.

Staffing and People

Starting in mid-March, companies in the U.S. were strongly encouraged to have employees work from home whenever possible; stay-at-home orders in many cities strengthened the ask. Parking and mobility operations shifted where they could, but it wasn’t possible for everyone.

Mike Estey, manager of parking programs with the City of Seattle, Wash., says most of his staff began working from home fairly quickly, but it wasn’t possible for everyone. Despite lowered demand for parking, frontline staff largely can’t work from home, and that’s created its own challenge.

“The field side is more difficult,” he says. “The office staff is working from home but the field staff can’t always do that. So the field staff feels like there are haves and have-nots, and they are the have-nots.” He works on constantly communicating with them and offering whatever support he can to dissipate that issue.

Hal King, CAPP, parking administrator with the City of Hollywood, Fla., says some issues come down to essential vs. non-essential functions and employees, especially when states decide who can and can’t move around or go to work based on those labels.

“We normally deal with hurricanes and everyone gets the essential tag put on them,” he says. “Now, we can’t go back and say those people are non-essential.” His downtown garages were about 60 percent full at press time, largely by residents of the city, but beach garages were empty.

“We have to have staff on standby,” he says. “And what do you do with those people if you just send them home? I’d prefer to keep people on the payroll and not have them burn up sick leave or vacation time or anything else for a situation that’s totally out of their control.”

Others have found ways for frontline people to keep their jobs doing different things. “We have about 150 officers a day on the street,” says Shawn McCormick, parking enforcement director, San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA). Those people are doing enforcement and working on curb management to ensure employees aren’t parking in front of businesses all day and keeping pick-up customers out of valuable parking spots. In an effort to keep people on the payroll and do good, McCormick says some officers began patrolling neighborhoods, offering a sense of presence and letting people know the city is still around.

“Some of our officers are taking on other assignments,” he says. “They’re stuffing bags with masks and gloves for hospitals, they’re cleaning buses, and they’re doing other things.”

In areas where parking enforcement has continued, staff remains on the street. “We’ve been working very hard at trying to stay ahead with the message of what we’re doing as an essential means of maintaining traffic flow,” says Scot Reinmann, section chief, parking operations, Montgomery County, Md., Department of Transportation. “We’re examining it constantly.” His office has made parking in two garages free for residents who don’t normally need off-street parking or who want to store vehicles until the crisis is over.

“If you’re still letting people park in your facility, it’s essential that you keep it safe,” he says. “I’m seeing most of our functions as essential, and we’re trying to be flexible with employees who have childcare issues. We are providing some level of safety and service as long as we’re available to be open.”

Operations and Revenue

Not everyone can keep their people working because demand is down significantly, and that has real affects on revenue and budgets. “Parking revenue and utilization is down anywhere between 40 and 70 percent per facility,” says Aurora Perkins, parking administrator, City of San Antonio, Texas. “The highest-impact facilities are those surrounding convention center operations, which have canceled all conventions and meetings until the first week of April [at press time].”

Enforcement is ongoing, she says, but officers have been given expanded areas to review. San Antonio has actually seen a bigger need for enforcement pertaining to parking violations and solid waste services. “More families are home with more vehicles on the street and an increase in residential trash output,” she says

Benito Pérez, AICP, CTP, curbside management operations planning manager at the District of Columbia Department of Transportation, says his department’s role has grown as well, “between outreach to reiterate CDC (Centers for Disease Control) guidance, move critical and business services online, and also continue to operate the transportation network for those who continue to rely on it—vulnerable populations, essential/ emergency responders, and employees.”

“The District Department of Transportation continues to operate and maintain our curbside as-is, with some exceptions such as lifting rush-hour restriction enforcement. We are contemplating how we can repurpose our curbside to facilitate enhanced pick-up/drop-off activity to support our food service and restaurant, pharmacy, and grocery businesses as those businesses transition to takeout/delivery models. That means contemplating revamping our existing Pick-up/Drop-off (PUDO) Zone program, whether temporarily or permanently.”

That’s a common theme in cities where parking organizations are called upon to help support businesses trying to survive the pandemic. Many have launched pick-up parking on the curb, offering customers a certain amount of free parking so they can patronize restaurants and stores safely. For many, it’s leading to other thoughts for a different future.

“As we continue to rethink curbside management in light of COVID-19, we are thinking not only in the immediate term and needs, but the ramifications of curbside in a more digitized future that will emerge after this public health emergency,” says Pérez. “Online food delivery (from restaurants and grocery stores) were nascent and starting to grow before this emergency. We have to start thinking now that such business activity will start to become a major part of our future and has huge ramifications on how we manage our curbside.”

For now, operations have shifted drastically. Ted Graf, director of parking, San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency, says demand is down, which has led to agency consolidation.

“As a consolidated transportation agency—that is, parking, traffic engineering, and transit are all under one roof and policy dictates parking revenues are to support transit—the impacts of COVID19 are pervasive,” he says. “Parking impacts are being measured by both revenue and utilization. Garage visits and revenue decreased by about 50 percent for the time period of March 1 to 19, and narrowing the time window to March 17 to 19 shows a reduction of 90+ percent; this spike is result of the city partially closing 15 of its 20 garages effective on March 18.”

“In parallel, on-street parking revenue decreased by about 70 percent as compared to March 2019,” he says. “Beyond revenue impacts, the agency expedited consideration of temporary changes to many parking policies (rates, time limits, enforcement, etc.) to best address the shift in demand during this crisis period.”

His staff is working to keep figures up to date and assess the total impact.

“With respect to parking regulations and enforcement, it was decided to cease enforcement for several regulations such as permit parking, general time limits, and street cleaning, but enforcement would continue for critical points of access—fire hydrants as well as other conditions for safety,” he says. “Parking enforcement is also being maintained for meters because meters are in locations where turnover is necessary for essential services including grocery stores, medical facilities ,and banks.” For now, meters have been reduced to base rates: $.50 per hour for vehicle spaces and $.10 per hour for motorcycles.

Empty Campuses

For university parking offices, COVID-19 has been a complete game-changer. Students and faculty have largely been sent home, leaving questions about staffing, enforcement, and the question they hear over and over—what about refunds?

Rodney Gomez, CAPP, executive director of parking & transportation at University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, says, “The biggest impact has been the loss of student, faculty, and visitor activity on our campuses. We have had to rethink our enforcement protocols as well as the level of service provided via our transit routes. We have had to be very adaptive to meet evolving needs while still adhering to safety protocols.”

Gomez says his university administration has been “on top of things from the beginning,” which eases some of the crunch. His office is focused on safety, with continuous monitoring and adjustments to keep customer service high.

“It’s a tough time for everyone and it’s important to keep morale up,” he says. “The future is very uncertain. We engage our staff as much as possible in our decisions, share knowledge as soon as we can, and encourage everyone to share their thoughts and feelings. It’s very easy to lose sight of the importance of community during this time.”

Other universities have similar things to share. Kevin Rowald, CAPP, director of parking and transportation at the University of Kansas Medical Center, says his blended world offers unique challenges, especially now.

“The leadership teams of the health system and university are communicating numerous times per day via numerous media avenues to adjust and react as necessary,” he says. “Our emergency management department is effectively executing and adjusting our established plans daily to accommodate new situations as the present themselves.”

“It has taken the entire campus working in synergy to address this challenge. Critical planning had taken place well in advance and then the entire team has shown a unique ability to be execute the plan while being nimble enough to adjust efficiently as the situation has changed. I am grateful to be a part of a great unified team,” he continues.

Aaron Quisenberry, associate director, student involvement and leadership center, University of Kansas, says the challenges are numerous, from bus route changes to working with the city to having all staff working from home. “It seems like I’ve got a dozen webinars or Zoom calls a day, trying to figure out what level of service we’re offering,” he says. “It seems like I’m busier than normal and there are so many different dynamics at play.”

He says communication is a priority, both with his staff and others across campus, up to and including guidance on what to do when someone shows COVID-19 symptoms.

Many participants of an IPMI online Shoptalk for university and campuses said refunds are a hot issue—when or whether to offer them and then how. An informal poll during the event showed slightly less than half of participants were actively offering refunds to students, and a popular sentiment was that faculty/staff payroll deductions for parking had simply stopped. Those were not true on campuses that still housed students, largely because they lived overseas and couldn’t go home. And a big concern was raised by Ross Allanson, CAPP, University of Minnesota: “What do we do with employees who are supposed to work from home but can’t do their jobs that way?”

Read the article here.

KIM FERNANDEZ is IPMI’s director of publications and editor of Parking & Mobility. She can be reached at fernandez@parking-mobility.org.


At press time, IPMI had hosted four online Shoptalks for COVID-19 conversation and sharing. More events are planned for the future—watch parking-mobility.org for dates and registration. Conversation on Forum (forum.parking-mobility. org) is flowing, with ideas, challenges, and collaboration happening daily.

Forum is open to all IPMI members and their staffs and shared documents become part of the permanent, searchable library. To participate, sign in with your parking-mobility.org credentials (resetting those is easy). For more information on using Forum, email fernandez@parking-mobility.org.

For up-to-date information on COVID-19, reference the World Health Organization (who.int) or U.S. Centers for Disease Control (cdc.gov). Information from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and fact sheet from the CDC are included in boxes with this article.


IPMI News: Message from the IPMI CEO & Chair – Stay Connected

We know you and your staff are facing huge challenges and many have already faced the reality of reducing your workforces as well. You are not alone. We want you to know we are here with you and will offer steadfast support during these unprecedented times.

IPMI is wholly committed to helping you stay connected with your fellow industry professionals so you can continue to share challenges, find solutions, and tap into a wealth of resources that is the hallmark of IPMI. We are continuing to build additional online resources daily and invite you to share this message with every member of your staff and industry colleagues.

This is not “business as usual” and we stand committed to support you now and into the future—when our country, our industry, and our organizations make a sure recovery from this crisis.

Ways to Stay Connected


For more details on the programs listed below and additional resources, visit and bookmark parking-mobility/stayconnected

  • Parking & Mobility magazine is going fully digital to ensure the fastest, most reliable delivery to you and your staff members wherever you are. Receive it free to your office or home email, or both. Click here to request a digital subscription.
  • Forum, IPMI’s online community, is the place your peers are connecting, asking and answering questions, and sharing their experiences with colleagues. If you are not receiving its daily digest email, please let us know; also reach out if we can help you with logging in or an orientation to the site.
  • On March 31, we are hosting additional free, industry-specific Shoptalks related to the COVID-19 crisis.  You determine the topics and conversation by sharing issues important to you and participating live. Recordings are posted for those who cannot attend the live events, and we will continue to convene our community this way regularly to keep in touch.
  • IPMI has opened up a series of free on-demand courses and webinars to our members to create and maintain professional development opportunities for your entire team at no charge.
  • For individuals facing job transition, IPMI has waived membership fees, and created the IPMI Resume Exchange on Forum for professionals interested in posting resumes and making connections with potential employers. Members update their online profiles with direct imports from LinkedIn. Our Career Center provides members with position listings free of charge, which are shared on Forum and social media.

Helping industry professionals stay connected has been in IPMI’s DNA for nearly 60 years. Our community will continue to come together, and our industry will recover. You have our commitment to being there for you.

Have ideas on how we can help you right now? Please email me at conrad@parking-mobility.org

 We are here for you. Let’s all stay connected. 


Shawn D. Conrad, CAE

Chief Executive Officer

International Parking & Mobility Institute




David G. Onorato, CAPP

Chair, IPMI Board of Directors

Pittsburgh Parking Authority

Member News: Park Assist has been Chosen to Upgrade Parking for Salmaniya Medical Complex

MANAMA, BAHRAIN – April 8th, 2020 – Park Assist® has been awarded the Parking Guidance System (PGS) contract for Salmaniya Medical Complex’s new carpark development, located in the Salmaniya district of Manama in the Kingdom of Bahrain. Owned by Edamah (the Real Estate investment arm of the Bahrain Government) and operated by Bahrain Carparks, the facility will serve one of the largest and busiest hospitals in the country. This installation will be the second project with Edamah and the third PGS deployment in Bahrain, all of which are Park Assist systems.

Due to Park Assist’s previous success at “The Terminal” in Adliya, Edamah chose to implement Park Assist’s parking guidance technology at this groundbreaking carpark as well. Equipped with Park Assist’s camera based M4 PGS, this new facility aims to provide the Salmaniya Medical Complex community with a sustainable parking facility that will both relieve congestion and facilitate a smooth flow of steady traffic.

Park Assist’s exclusive M4 PGS will be used to help quickly and seamlessly steer visitors to available parking spaces. Upon entry, the patented, camera-based technology guides parkers using color-coded smart-sensors. The smart-sensor’s LED lights are triggered to change from red to green when spaces become available, allowing visitors to pinpoint exactly where to park, saving them valuable time and providing a more efficient parking journey.

“We are honored to again be working with Edamah on another prestigious project in Bahrain. We thoroughly believe that the deployment of our technology will significantly improve the user experience for patients, visitors and staff whilst simultaneously achieving the sustainability objectives of the project.” Said Adam Fitzgerald, Regional Account Manager – MENA.

Partnering with BAK Group’s Mantech Commercial services company, Park Assist’s site work began in March 2020 and is slated for completion by July.
About Park Assist
Park Assist® is the parking industry’s leading camera-focused innovator with the most camera-based parking guidance installations in the world. Our patented technology helps customers effortlessly find parking spaces in real-time as well as find their cars when they return. Simultaneously, we provide parking operators with tools to improve customer satisfaction, create new revenue opportunities, realize greater operational control, capture parker analytics and expand CCTV capabilities. Park Assist is part of the TKH Group (Euronext: TWEKA), a $1.8 billion publicly traded company headquartered in the Netherlands. For more information, visit www.parkassist.com.

Katie Rodenhiser
Global Marketing Manager

A Guide to Parking

A Guide to Parking - IPMI coverMany parking professionals have lamented that there is no textbook for our industry—until now.

A Guide to Parking provides information on the current state of parking, providing professionals and students with an overview of major areas of the parking, transportation, and mobility industry, punctuated by brief program examples. More than 30 subject matter experts and many of our dedicated volunteers contributed chapters on their specific area of expertise for a comprehensive volume about parking.

Order your copy today! Available for purchase on Routledge and Amazon in paper and digital versions.

Paperback: $53.61
Digital: $43.41

  • A Guide to Parking approaches the industry from a broad perspective, first providing an overview of the industry, the various frameworks that parking relates to, and then more specific aspects of the industry.
  • Developed for professionals new to the field and managers for use in orientation and refresher training, and graduate-level students focusing on areas of study that are impacted by the parking industry: planning, engineering, architecture, real estate, transportation programs, and more.
  • Including a glossary and a fully-indexed content, the new volume will serve as the consolidated reference book for CAPP candidates in the near future.