Parking Pilot to Begin this Month

Ever find yourself circling the same city block 4 times trying to find a parking spot? Ever finally find the spot only to discover that you have no change to feed the meter? The parking (or lack thereof) in major cities has long been a headache for city leaders, spawning such sites like this or headlines such as this  and this.

The parking woes even have the reporters fighting

The City of Dallas is hoping to eliminate these problems with the kickoff of the Parking Pilot project set to begin this month. The parking pilot will use technology to assist Dallas drivers with finding and conveniently paying for parking in popular and congested areas of the city. During this pilot, selected areas will be field tested to see what works best for Dallas. The launch sites are as follows: Central Business District (CBD), Mockingbird Station, Oak Lawn, Arts District, Uptown, City Hall, Deep Ellum, Jefferson and the West End. These areas represent 15% (or 650) of the total number of parking spaces.

Each area will have different features shown in the graphic below (Types of Parking Pilots by Area) using some or all of the following Field Pilots – City’s Wireless Mesh Network, Smart Meter, Sensor, Parking Map App, Multi-space Meter and Car Sharing Service.

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The first areas to undergo testing will be the Deep Ellum (2700 – 3000 block of Commerce Street), the Jefferson Corridor (a 6 block span from 100 E. Jefferson to 300 W. Jefferson) and the West End (1700 Market). The Deep Ellum and Jefferson pilots will have multi-space meters which will eliminate the single meter poles. This will lend a more aesthetically pleasing look to the streetscape. All of the multi-space meters in Deep Ellum will also have a pay by license plate option. Sensors at both the Deep Ellum and West End locations will collect data and determine whether a space is occupied, something the payment system alone cannot determine.

In addition to the multi-space meters on Jefferson, some single space meters will be added in front of the Oak Cliff Municipal Center. These meters will take credit cards and dollar bills, something the current meters cannot accept. The new West End meters will also have multiple pay options.

While some of the changes might not be obvious immediately, they will all have an impact on how Dallas citizens and visitors will park, pay and play. See below for the “Before” pictures of the affected areas.

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The Multi-Space Meter willreplace this army of single space meters on Jefferson Boulevard.

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The new meters in the West End will accept coins and credit cards.

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Deep Ellum will also see some of the single space meters replaced by a multi-space meter.