WEST HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH)– Technology is making lots of things in our lives easier and now even parking has gone high tech. West Hartford is the latest town to adopt a smart-phone ‘app’ to pay for on-street parking.
Until Thursday, if you parked in West Hartford Center, you had to put money in a kiosk, buy time, and then when that time ran out, came back to the kiosk, even if you were in the middle of dinner!
“I’ve had that experience where I had to run back to the car put money in the meter,” said Ralph Braithwaite, West Hartford. “During dinner. No fun at all.”
But no more, now there’s an app for parking in West Hartford. Just sign up online with your payment information
“Once you’ve done that and you’re a client of the app, hit the app, literally within 15-20 seconds you’ve now bought an hour, two hours of pay parking in West Hartford Center,” said John Phillips, West Hartford Public Works Director.
And you’re not buying time at a particular spot, you’re buying time for your car, so you can move spaces based on where you need to go.
“So if you’re parked on LaSalle Road, but you find yourself having to move to IShin Road, you still have paid parking within a 2 hour, 3 hour block. It’s your time to be used somewhere else,” said Phillips.
New Haven started using a similar app a couple years ago. News 8′s Kent Pierce sent a message to the head of parking in New Haven, using an app on his phone, and he said they had 150,000 users during their first year. But will people in West Hartford use it?”
“People are always wondering about parking, whether they have enough time on the meter, they’ve got to run out of where they are to go feed the meter, this is going to solve all their problems,” said Matthew Phillips, Mathew Phillips Salon.
He owns a hair salon and thinks it will be good for business because customers can add time from their chair or at the dinner table.
“I’d absolutely use the app, I mean I think that it makes a whole lot of sense,” said Braithwaite.
There is a 25 cent convenience fee every time you use the app. It’s called PassportParking. It’s available from the app store, or you can sign up online.