The Town of Bel Air, near Baltimore, Maryland, has contracted with ParkMobile to expand its parking options in the downtown area. With the new system, a visitor can pay for metered parking in town without having to use coins or a town issued smart payment card. The app would bill for the parking through the user’s designated credit card provider.
The town plans to divide the current metered areas into numbered zones. A person with a ParkMobile Bel Air app will then be able to use a metered space in a particular zone by keying in the zone number and the time they need to park. That information will be entered into a database and the cost of the parking billed to the user’s designated credit card. Meters will continue to accept coins for those who prefer that method.
The town won’t pay ParkMobile for its app service. For each transaction, a user will pay a 35-cent convenience fee to the vendor, 10 cents to the user’s credit card company and 5 cents to the town, a total of 50 cents. Town Planning Director Kevin Small said the town will use its share toward advertising the new convenience to those who need to park, including placing stickers on meters to explain the app is available.
Bel Air intends to continue to look at all possibilities to help make parking more user friendly in the future, such as reservations at stadium venues for concerts and sporting events and within the metro area, and GPS capabilities to show a visitor where a space might be open.