Dynamically Priced Parking = Free WiFi?

A Strong Towns podcast this week features an interview with Donald Shoup in which he suggests his usual approach to selling neighborhoods and business districts on metered parking: share the revenue!

But he goes on to suggest another benefit. He describes one district in which dynamic pricing was communicated to meters via WiFi. Since the WiFi infrastructure was then in place, they provided free WiFi to the district!

[Sadly, I believe the paystations in Portland communicate via cellular modem.]

One response to “Dynamically Priced Parking = Free WiFi?”

    • What the heck did you say?? PLEASE proofread.

      If you’re implying we should have WiFi at Max stations and on Max trains, I’d say that’s about as big of a waste of money as I could imagine, even for TriMet. For an agency drowning in debt, and for a technology largely deemed unnecessary with the advent of technologies like LTE, I say it’s a bad idea all around.

  1. I, and many others, really am tired of seeing metered parking mushrooming out everywhere in this city. It has its place – downtown, mainly – but has no business in neighborhoods and their business districts! If you really want to kill small businesses, then by all means, meter the parking. But if the idea is to limit how long people park (which is consistently the claim by the city), they’re already doing that in most places. Enforce it if need be, but I don’t see this as an issue that needs fixing. They can derive extra revenue elsewhere, without adding more meter nazis throughout the city.

    Those of you who so heavily advocate for carless transportation forget that even in Portland, the vast, vast, vast majority of us get around by car, and if it’s not easy to get somewhere and park, people WILL take their business elsewhere where their cars are “welcome”.

    • The problem is that metered parking is poorly implemented. Instead of “meter nazis” who will ticket you if you stay just a few minutes more than you originally thought you were going to be at a place or past an arbitrary time limit, and dealing with complicated meters and paper receipts, you should simply be able to insert a payment card into the meter upon parking and go, and then check out when you come back.

      You would be able to pay for exactly the amount of time you stay, and could stay as long as you want in exchange for the per-hour price rising the longer you stay.

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