Collingswood introduces pay-by-plate at parking kiosks

Visitors to Collingswood will soon be able to park in town using their own license plate number.

The Borough will introduce a pay-by-plate system that allows users to type their license plate number into kiosks which gives them the option to purchase more time from various locations in town.Starting on September 6 visitors can park, enter their license plate number, pay and then purchase more time at any kiosk while enjoying town just by visiting the nearest pay station rather than returning to where they originally parked and printing a new parking slip. Collingswood will staff extra officers in the downtown specifically to help visitors with any questions or issues during the first few weeks of installation.

“You can pay with out having to rush back to your parking space if you run out of time,” said Collingswood Police Chief Richard Sarlo. “Pay-by-plate allows people to ‘top up’ their time from anywhere.”

The current pay-and-print system in which users print a parking slip to display in their dashboard will remain available to visitors as well. The Borough is also investigating other conveniences such as cell phone payment that allows users to purchase more time without ever leaving a store or restaurant and smart card technology to sell parking time on a town card.

“As a shopping a dining destination it’s important we make parking convenient,” said Collingswood Mayor Jim Maley. “This makes it even easier for people to enjoy town.”

In 2010 Collingswood replaced traditional coin-only meters with parking kiosks along several blocks in the heart of the downtown along Haddon Ave and in the new LumberYard public parking garage. The new kiosks take bills, coins and credit cards ($1 minimum). From Fern Avenue to (and including) Powell Lane, kiosks similar to ones in metropolitan areas like Philadelphia replaced the decades-old meters.

The traditional coin meters are in use past Powell and Fern Aves and in the Borough Hall and Atlantic Ave lots, underneath the PATCO speedline, although the Borough replaced all old coin meter heads for more reliable electronic heads. Collingswood hopes to eventually make all parking payable at kiosk pay stations.

Parking rates are 50 cents per hour (for a maximum of three hours) and the kiosks are currently located at least one per block. Parking enforcement staff is informed in real-time which cars are paid up and which are in violation.

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