Source – https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Parking_lot_at_HAA_Kobe.jpg
Most people are under the impression that only metros and large cities experience parking problems. They couldn’t be fartherfrom the truth. With millions of new vehicles on the streets every year, the problem continues to penetrate the relatively less populated suburbs as well.
Particularly, commercial buildings comprising shopping centers, offices, and even hotels face parking-related problems throughout the year. The age-old parking lots,which you could enter simply by purchasing a parking ticket, can no longer deal with the current levels of traffic congestion. In fact, frequent traffic jams and parking inefficiencies can lead to significant losses.
This is why parking lot owners and commercial building administrators are increasingly turning towards smart parking technology. Some of these systems offer comprehensive services including online payments, car searching, and parking time notifications. Though still in the nascent stage, the concept of smart parking comes with various benefits. Read on to find out what these benefits are.
1. Reduced Traffic Congestion and Increased Efficiency
The amount of work and time required to check-in and checkout users in a parking lot is one of the biggest areas of concern for commercial building owners. The costs of hiring and training the parking staff, particularly to handle your parking requirements, can take a big chunk out of your building maintenance budget. Besides, manual ticketing often results in delays and lengthy traffic queues.
However, with the help of real-time sensors, smart parking systems can improve the check-in and checkout process, thereby reducing traffic congestion. Further, it increases efficiency as people don’t need to drive around in search of an empty parking spot.
2. Optimal Usage of Parking Space
The efficiency of a smart parking system is not just limited to check-in and check-out process. It can also help ensure optimal utilization of your parking space. More often than not, the lack of information or the uncertainty of finding an empty spot after driving around the parking lot makes it impossible to ensure optimal usage. As a result, some parking lots may remain empty permanently.
However, real-time information from parking sensors can solve this problem. Space-efficient parking solutions not only enhance user experience, but also increase the revenue for lot owners. Plus, commercial and corporate entities can make the best use of their parking capacity.
3. Payment Flexibility and Accuracy
As mentioned earlier, manual ticketing is the biggest concern for parking lot operators. Fully-automated parking systems, however, can take this process to a whole new level. You can replace daily cash payments for regular users with online payments with the integration of payment and POS systems.
The system can use real-time data from parking meters to calculate the exact amount of charges. So, the chances of manual errors and arguments arisingthereof becomenil. Recurring users can simply register their credit card and vehicle registration numbers so the next time they check-in, the system will automatically generate bill. Plus, you can create system-based loyalty programs for your regular customers, providing them with better consumer experience.
4. Enhanced Security
Vandalism and theft are the two most common difficulties car owners have to face even if they are using parking lots. According to the Preliminary Semiannual Crime Statistics for 2016 released by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), though the rest of the property-related crimes registered a decline, motor vehicle thefts increased 6.6%.
Fortunately, you can add a variety of security measures to a smart parking system. Real-time data analysis, along with video surveillance, makes it difficult to get unauthorized access to the vehicles. Thus, car owners no longer have to worry about theft or vandalism. Plus, it also reduces the liability risks of building or parking lot owners and managers.
5. Decreased Management Costs
Maintaining a parking lot is an expensive affair. In the case of a conventional parking lot, you need to hire ticketing personnel, security guards, maintenance workers, and administrative staff to manage everyday operations. With the help of a smart parking system, however, you can reduce operating costs considerably. Though you may have to make a substantial investment initially, you will be able to save money on operating and maintenance costs in the long term.
6. Reduced Air Pollution
Do you remember driving in endless laps in search of parking space? As it happens, sometimes looking for a parking spot can take more time than driving to the destination itself. In other words, these extra lapscauseexcess fuel consumption, wastage actually, in the urban areas, which are already grappling with mounting amounts ofair pollution and traffic congestion.
Usually, you have to accelerate, decelerate and stay on standby frequently when looking for an empty parking space, which leads to more fuel consumption and emission comparedto whendriving at a steady speed. Thus, it is neither economical nor environmentally friendly.
However, with the help of a smart parking system, you can quickly find an empty parking spot. As the system collects data in real time, you can search and reserve a spot in advance, reducing the endless cruising and the extra emissions.
In 2016, more than 75 million cars were sold worldwide, with China leading the charts. As the rate of urbanization in most developing countries also continues to climb, thecity administrations across the globe will need to come up with customized public transport solutions. This is where the scalability of a smart parking system comes in.
These systems can be scaled to meet the needs of commercial establishments of virtually any size. In fact, they have emerged as one of the most successful aspects of smart-city models. They can be combined with the Internet of Things (IoT) to create Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) for densely populated urban areas.
Finding an empty parking spot is easier said than done. Usually, people find it difficult to locate empty parking slots in commercial buildings such as shopping malls, particularly on weekends. Cruising around looking for a parking spot also leads to traffic congestion and air pollution. However, you can quickly overcome these problems with the help of a smart parking system. Hopefully, the above seven benefits will help you understand the significance of such a system for the benefit of commercial buildings as well as the environment.