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City Looking into Automated Parking Enforcement Using License Plate Readers

License plate readers mounted on a parking vehicle

City is looking into a technology that will eliminate the need for physical parking permits (hang tags) and visitor passes, as residents of properties within these zones will now be able to apply for and register their vehicle(s) virtually by their license plate number(s).

While virtual visitor passes may also be applied for online through this process, physical visitor passes will still be available and may be requested in lieu of online visitor registration.

The current City Budget includes the purchase of License Plate Recognition (LPR) software for the purpose of enforcement of all permit parking zones city-wide.

In addition, the City Council eliminated annual fees associated with residentially zoned parking permits and visitor passes on June 9, 2020, further streamlining the permitting process for its residents.

While parking permits and visitor passes are currently renewed on an annual basis, staff is recommending allowing permanent permit registration by license plate to owner-occupied properties in the future.

To date, two city vehicles have been provided with LPR technology, which will eliminate the need for residents to obtain physical permits and visitor passes. This technology will improve enforcement efficiency and effectiveness. LPR will scan vehicle license plates and identify those which do not have residential parking zone permits. LPR will also allow for Parking Enforcement personnel to more efficiently patrol residential permit zones.

Added to online permit registration, no-cost permits, and permitting by license plate number, LPR technologically based enforcement provides the most advanced and cost-effective parking management and enforcement.

Costs associated with the purchase and installation of both LPR software and hardware for the two city vehicles, to include the 4-year extended warranty for advanced replacement coverage, totaled $107,140.12. However, with the elimination of physical permits having to be purchased annually at an estimated cost of $25,000.00, and an anticipated reduction in postage and supplies for mailing purposes, the costs for this system could be recouped in four (4) to five (5) years, and possibly even less time when factoring in revenue generated from non-compliance fines for permit restricted zones.

[City of College Park]

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3 Comments to “City Looking into Automated Parking Enforcement Using License Plate Readers”

  1. By Marilyn Conrad, October 31, 2020 @ 4:26 pm

    I’m dense. I don’t understand how this will work. My only son visits me once a year and I have to pay a fee, so he can park his truck in front of MY house for maybe 2-4 hours?
    My husband & I struggle to pay our utility bills & taxes, we’re both on SS as our only income! I’ve seen nothing to help the elderly in all your past “suggestions” to help the City’s LOW income residents.

    Why was this not mentioned in the CP newspaper?

  2. By Fazlul Kabir, November 1, 2020 @ 9:26 pm

    Dear Scooter, As the article says, while virtual visitor passes may also be applied for online through this process, physical visitor passes will still be available and may be requested in lieu of online visitor registration. In other words, if you feel more comfortable with the old visitor passes for your son’s vehicle, please continue to do that. I hope this clarifies.

  3. By Stephen Belyea, November 10, 2020 @ 11:12 pm

    Fazlul –
    Is there more information on what information is planned to be collected by the LPR system, how its stored, how long its stored, or who/what parties have access to this information?
    This seems like a smart way to streamline enforcement activities, but I’m interested in learning more about how else the data collected may be used.