Mayor Bloomberg announced yesterday that he wants to make the parking experience for New Yorkers more user friendly.
Specifically, he studying and testing “smart parking meter” technology which will allow motorists to see a map of available parking spaces within a given area, accept payment from a cell phone, and send a text message when time on the meter is about to expire.
These plans are part of a larger overhaul of the NYC parking system which will also include reducing alternate-side-of-the street parking, lowering scofflaw penalties, and increased sensitivity training for traffic enforcement agents.
In an Op-Ed piece to the Daily News, Mayor Bloomberg asks “Who said that parking in New York had to be so hard?”. Of course, cynics like City Controller William Thompson, called this a stunt to pander to voters in an election year. Thompson has a point. It is common for voter-friendly initiatives to get introduced by incumbents during an election year. One could ask why weren’t such measures introduced years ago? On the other hand, at least, City residents get a “gift” once every four years.
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