City to Test "Pay by Phone" Parking Meter Program

DOT says pilot program would make parking more convenient for drivers and for the city.

Tuesday, Aug 16, 2011  |  Updated 8:15 AM EDT
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New Yorkers can already set programs to DVR with their cell phones -- and they may soon be able to feed the parking meter that way, too.

The city plans to pilot a "pay by phone" parking meter program that would alert drivers as time runs out and enable them to purchase additional time without returning to the meter.

Deputy Transportation Commissioner Bruce Schaller tells The New York Post the technology would make paying for parking more convenient for drivers, who would not have to go back to their cars, as well as for the city, saving officials the time it takes to collect and sort cash from every meter in the five boroughs.

Schaller says the "pay by phone" system would also make it more difficult for drivers to pay beyond the parking time limit.

In order to use the "pay by phone" program, users would have to register once online and then use an app or text message to type in the number of the meter where they're parking and the amount of time they would like to buy.

The city plans to outfit nearly 300 parking spots with the new technology in the next few months for a one-year test program. The city has yet to choose a neighborhood for the pilot, but the Post reports it will likely be a commercial heavy area in the outer boroughs. 

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