Pay stations modernize parking at zoo's lot

Want to spend more time at Honolulu Zoo but only have a few minutes left before your parking time expires?
20100716_newsPARKING.jpgNot to worry. A new pay station system at the parking lot allows users to add more time through their mobile phones.

Residents and tourists started using the new solar-powered pay stations that replaced old parking meters yesterday. Ten pay stations were installed throughout the lot, the first installation of its kind on Oahu.

Coins, credit cards and smart cards can be used at the pay stations. Parking is $1 per hour. There is no daily maximum, allowing users to pay $24 dollars if they want to park there for a 24-hour period.

Motorists will need their license plate number to make the payment. Users will not be required to place receipts on dashboard.

"This is the convenience factor," said Robert Ziola, president of Aparc Systems Inc.

Some first-time users said the new stations were easy to navigate, while others said they were complicated, mostly because they did not have their license plate number readily available before heading to the pay station.

Kaneohe resident June Wehner made two trips between station and car, the first to get her license plate number and the second to place her receipt on the dashboard, though not required.

"It was like back and forth. It's a pain," said Wehner, pushing a stroller with her 7-week-old son, Keegan, aboard. "I didn't know you had to have your license plate number."

Hawaii Kai resident Fred Stamp, who parked his truck to head to the beach with his cousin who is visiting from San Jose, Calif., described the new system as progressive.

"It's better than the coin parking meters," he said.
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