Rahm Emanuel said, “You never let a serious crisis go to waste. And what I mean by that it’s an opportunity to do things you think you could not do before.”
Last year brought discussions of campus closures, telelearning, and teleworking. Within a week, these discussions were reality. When the awareness that this COVID thing would last longer than a few weeks, we started to look at how the lull could be used to keep the momentum of teleworking going as a demand-reduction tool.
To address all the issues for making teleworking an ongoing mobility strategy, we created a telework committee. Stakeholders from human resources, technology, safety and ergonomics, employee/union relations, communications, and finance. Transportation Services coordinates the committee, which will address the physical, legal, supervisory, and training issues and keep teleworking a viable mobility option into the future.
Illustrate how teleworking is a mobility advantage.
Recognize the institutional needs of a teleworking program.
Detail best practices and measure the effectiveness of amnesty and relief programs for constituents and revenue recovery efforts.
Offers 1 CAPP Credit towards application or recertification.
Perry H. Eggleston, CAPP, DPA; Executive Director for Transportation Services; UC Davis Transportation Services
Perry Eggleston, CAPP, DPA, has more than 25 years’ experience developing, refining, and implementing mobility programs as an officer, supervisor, manager, director, consultant, and executive director. In his career, he has served organizations in California, Kentucky, New Jersey, and Texas. He is an active member of the IPMI and California Public Parking Association.
Ramon Zavala, Transportation Demand Manager, UC Davis Transportation Services
Ramon Zavala holds a bachelor’s degree in criminology from UC Irvine, where he began his work in transportation demand management. After seven years with UCI’s Transportation department, he transferred to UC Davis’ Transportation Services, where he manages the TDM program, transit relations, and overseeing the overseeing the bicycle program.
Everything around us is getting smart—your house, your car, your watch, and the parking and mobility industry is no exception. This can be overwhelming to professionals regardless of if they oversee a mature parking and mobility program or are just getting started. This presentation will introduce participants to the smart city/campus/community concept and help them gain comfort and confidence in beginning their journey towards implementing smart infrastructure solutions.
Define what it means to be a smart city/campus/community
Recognize the benefits of becoming a smart city/campus/community and the effects on economic development, urban planning, transportation, parking, and mobility.
Identify the details of what is included in being a smart city/campus/community.
Explore strategies towards implementing smart infrastructure solutions from which a city/campus/community can scale.
Offers 1 CAPP Credit towards application or recertification.
Thomas Szubka, CAPP; Senior Consultant; Walker Consultants
With more than 17 years of experience in Parking and Mobility, recently on the senior management team, Thomas Szubka, CAPP, is an experienced leader in operations, sales, and organizational development. With past leadership experience as a parking operator in the private and municipal sectors, he has an extensive background in
parking and mobility operations as well as the development and implementation of supporting technologies. He serves on the Board of Directors for the Florida Parking and Transportation Association (President-elect), is a member of the IPMI Technology Committee, and is an IPMI APO Site Reviewer.
UCLA has long been a leader in reducing drive-alone rates. Historically, attention has been focused on subsidizing alternative transportation products, but parking policy plays a key role. Though often overlooked, daily discounted parking is crucial support strategy to meeting transportation demand management goals.
UCLA has been able to expand the use of alternatives, lower the drive-alone rate, and maximize the utility of a limited and shrinking parking inventory by selling parking by the day to faculty and staff at a discount from the public daily rate. This flexibility enables customers to drive when they need to, and do something else when they can. Daily discounts remove the incentives of all-you-can-park permits, incentivizing customers to “Drive Less and Save More.”
Recently, UCLA has been able to maximize this transportation demand management strategy by utilizing virtual permits. This has removed sign-up requirements and enabled pre-tax payroll deduction as a payment method. Additionally, the operational flexibility provided by this approach has provided frameworks and flexibility to respond to the impacts of Covid-19.
In an IPMI webinar later today, I’ll lay out the landscape at UCLA, review the history of our daily discounted parking program, highlight some of the operational flexibility afforded to us via this program, and finally review how this has allowed us to respond to the pandemic. I hope you’ll join us.
Chris Lechner, CAPP, is parking data analytics and strategic projects manager at UCLA.
The weather outside is starting to change, ushering in cooler and more palatable temperatures. That’s usually a sign that students are heading back to college and my favorite sport (college football) is about to kick off. While these things are happening, it’s obviously a slightly different take in 2020. Some students are finding their way back to campus, with either in-person, online, or hybrid classes awaiting them. But for those campuses that are occupied, one other thing comes along with the student—their car.
One of the most common stakeholder complaints I hear around academic campuses is spillover student parking in adjacent residential neighborhoods. For the past two years, I’ve been living within two blocks of an academic campus. I can now confirm firsthand what all of those stakeholders have mentioned. The students and their cars invade and stay for days, weeks, and sometimes months on end. A lot of my neighbors are aggrieved by it, going as far to post notes and messages on the cars. It’s all a fascinating observational experiment that directly ties back to the work we do!
There are several considerations in this type of situation:
Do nothing and hope that the demand for parking finds balance or equilibrium.
Implement a neighborhood parking permit program that restricts parking to only registered vehicles. This requires residents to register all vehicles that will park on street and likely pay an annual permit fee. And it introduces parking enforcement in an area that isn’t used to it.
Implement time limits for parking for non-registered vehicles to dis-incentivize long stays (based in hours or days). This allows parking but prohibits vehicle storage.
Implement paid parking with the permit program to allow for unregistered vehicles to pay for their time. A great example of this is occurring in Columbus, Ohio, near the Ohio State University campus. Revenues collected from non-registered vehicles is also reinvested into the area to help improve congestion and mobility.
There’s no easy solution to the problem. The one surefire way to find equitable solutions is collaboration where the community and campus leadership work together to define the problem and develop a response. By working together, the outcomes tend to focus on efficient use of space and minimization of conflicts, rather than choosing one side over the other.
Brett Wood, CAPP, PE, is president of Wood Solutions Group, LLC.
Experts say micro-mobility will emerge as a major form of transportation, especially in cities and on campuses, as we re-open after COVID-19. How do you think the industry could best take advantage of this trend?
That’s the question we posed to our Ask the Experts panel for the September issue of Parking & Mobility, and the answers we got were quite insightful. A few additional thoughts we loved:
“Individually, cities and campuses need to reach out to those that have already utilized forms of micromobility to learn the best uses, possible challenges, and ways to adequately implement their services.” – Mark Lyons, CAPP, parking division manager, City of Sarasota, Fla.
“The time is now to create mobility hubs, car-free zones, wider sidewalk design standards, protected bike lanes, adaptive re-use of on-street parking, and to look at urban design as more transportation-friendly and safer. There is definitely an opportunity for impactful conversation and for micro-mobility industry and urban planners to partner with municipal and community leaders to engage the public in the conversation and ultimately create a safer environment for all users. Engaging the public in a meaningful way will create a sense of community belonging which is so needed during this challenging transition.” – Kathryn Hebert, PhD, director transportation, mobility, and parking, City of Norwalk, Conn.
“COVID-19 will result in speeding up the pace of the transformation of public and private transportation as the need for smaller groups remains a key focus. It is also an opportunity to enhance public and private transportation by catering more to the specific needs of ridership in addressing the first- and last-mile of riders commutes by providing more specifically tailored transportation options.” –Larry J. Cohen, CAPP, executive director, Lancaster Parking Authority, Pa.
Starting in mid-March and the first effects of COVID-19, we started having multiple meetings a day and adjusted our operations as classes moved online for the remainder of the spring semester. By late spring, our daily meetings shifted their focus to preparing for the fall 2020 semester, with daily 8:30 a.m. Webex meetings pulling together 150 people from many departments across campus.
I got into a routine, spending a lot of time on webinars trying to learn what my peers in the industry were doing for parking and shuttle operations, reporting back about what was being done elsewhere, and formulating our plans to re-open in August. As parking and transportation seems to be part of so many campus operations, I added meetings a few times a week on subcommittees dealing with campus COVID signage and creating outdoor event spaces, many in parking lots we expected to be wide open with the reduced number of students on campus. After all this work preparing for fall semester, more classes shifted online, leaving our parking and shuttle demand at 20 percent of normal.
As we count how many cars we have on campus each day instead of empty spaces, it’s become unusually calm and almost boring at the start of the semester for our operation. While driving home the other day, I thought to myself how much I miss hearing complaints from customers that they can’t find a parking space or that the buses are full. While stressful, that might be the best sign of a return to normal in the world of parking and transportation.
Josh Cantor, CAPP, is director of parking and transportation at George Mason University.
The University of Mississippi has started inviting faculty and staff back to campus for work. We were well taken care of during our campus shutdown, which stretched from mid-March until July 1, and paid administrative leave was allowed for those with positions not conducive to a remote working environment. As we all found out, service industries find it nearly impossible to function during pandemics.
Now we have been challenged with bringing staff back in a safe environment. Is that even possible for higher education campuses? College campuses share the same risk level during a virus breakout as cruise ships. Would you want to go on a cruise right now? Would you want to be staffed on one of those ships? Would you send your child on a cruise? These are the questions our staff members are wrestling with right now.
I work for a great university that ranks high on the Modern Think list of Great Colleges to Work For every year. We currently offer two programs to assist our staff during these times: Emergency Paid Sick Leave and Expanded Family Medical Leave. These offer relief to staff members who are sick or have a close family member who is sick with COVID-19, anyone that is quarantined by local policy, those considered high risk due to an underlying condition, or those with child care needs due to care provider and school closures.
I consider us lucky to have these programs provided by our state. These programs provide equity and support for our staff. This will provide a sense of safety to our staff they often do not feel in other jobs. Providing information to employees is crucial. Without the information, opportunities might be missed and costly staff turnover could ensue.
Richard L Bradley, CAPP, is manager of administrative affairs, department of parking & transportation, at The University of Mississippi.
Colleges and universities are facing unprecedented challenges this fall: To return to campus, to stay all-remote, to launch a hybrid model, and everything all of those decisions entail. Health and safety have never played as big a role in a fall as they do this year, and that means parking and mobility departments are having to rethink almost everything–including what decreased revenue means.
In this month’s Parking & Mobility magazine, a panel of experts from universities around the country share the decisions they’re making and where they hope to go from here, including pivoting very quickly as things change. Their concerns are university specific but the challenges and lessons translate to nearly every other sector of the industry. Find out more in this month’s magazine.
Albert Einstein said the measure of intelligence is the ability to change. The demand for changes in mobility programs as a result of COVID-19 are enough to make any good mobility professional more flexible than taffy on hot day. I know you’re probably more than done with hearing about C-19 issues. And, yes, there are still many hurdles to cross before we can feel like it was before and getting back to the new “normal.” But for a minute, could we start to look back and realize that in very short order, our industry pros became central in the planning and recovery of our local microcosm?
Look at some of the stories where parking directors have yielded, albeit temporarily, the demand for paid meters and citations, instead posting signage to help local business preserve parking near their doors to encourage shoppers to continue honoring local services. Think about the number of streets and parking spaces that have been cut off so restaurants could bring seating outside to the customer. Loading zones have been extended to improve delivery logistics. Many cities and universities enhanced parking rates or time restrictions to ensure customers were not dissuaded from engaging local businesses. Many of us modified citation collections schedules and fees to provide relief during this period, when so many workers lost jobs.
There are many stories that could be talked about for days, but can we now take a moment to bask in our collective efforts to help our communities? Our professional parking and mobility pros have worked as integral partners with city engineers, planners, police departments, universities, city managers, and business associations and districts, and continue to support local businesses.
I hope our mobility community is no longer considered a distraction or viewed as an opponent of the business community. The next time somebody tells us that paid parking programs scare their customers away, remind them how flexible our industry was during the pandemic and of the hours we’ve spent contemplating how to help our local businesses, as well as the concessions that were made to help keep dreams alive.
If what Albert Einstein said is true, then congratulations team! Not only are you very smart, but you’ve made us all look great in the process!
Mark Lyons, CAPP, is parking division manager with the City of Sarasota, Fla.
During many large-scale events and emergencies, such as severe weather, I am used to being an integral part of planning and response as I represent parking and transportation. It sometimes takes me being pushy, but I always want to make sure access concerns are addressed, as we are often the only ones who know everything happening across campus because of our daily responsibilities.
However, when the COVID pandemic begin, my staff and I had some major decisions to make regarding shuttle operations. We then had to respond to pressure to provide parking refunds when classes went online for the remainder of the spring and summer semesters and very few would be driving to campus anymore. As people were adjusting to the online classes and telework and among the public health concerns, I was not surprised that parking issues jumped into the discussion—while people don’t like paying for parking when they do park, they certainly don’t like paying when they can’t park anymore!
Once the refunds were done, operations become relatively quiet and my role stepped back. As we prepare to re-open in fall and several different scenarios are considered by the university’s administration, our role has returned to high visibility. How are we going to deal with drastic reductions in shuttle seating capacity, how are we going to sell permits and provide more daily options, how are we going to clean pay stations and push more mobile payment use, etc.?
While I think there are more complex decisions to make as we re-open—likely with limited in-person classes—perhaps it’s a good sign of normalcy when everyone has time to give me their opinion of how we should operate parking and transportation!
Josh Cantor, CAPP, is director of parking and transportation at George Mason University.