Philadelphia's Latest Innovation: Virtual Parking

-- Parking Authority Teams Up with Refinery, to Move Off-Street Parking Online -- In Philadelphia, finding the perfect parking space will soon be only a mouse click away.
refinery.jpgRefinery, a Top 25 U.S. interactive agency, announced that it is building an application for the Philadelphia Parking Authority (PPA) that for the first time will link the City’s more than 1,000 off-street parking venues, even those not managed by PPA, through a consumer-friendly Web site. The site will allow users to view detailed location, availability, timing, and rate information in real time. The off-street parking locator is one of the first systems of it kind for a major metropolitan parking authority such as PPA.

This functionality, set to launch in 2005, is designed to make parking in Philadelphia more convenient and transparent by giving users the ability to review all viable off-street parking options by location, without leaving their homes. Refinery is designing the site with a state-of-art Geographic Information System (GIS) that combines detailed Philadelphia street map and attraction information with a rich database of off-street parking venues.

“This is a great technology that will truly take the mystery out of parking in Philadelphia,” said Andrew Sullivan, Refinery Chairman and CEO. “We’re excited to help PPA recognize its vision through this project and other innovative technologies going forward.”

“Philadelphia has always been known as a City of innovation and we hope this changes the way people think about parking,” said Joe Egan, Executive Director of the Philadelphia Parking Authority. “We believe this new service will help stabilize parking rates by providing consumers with information that will help them make informed parking choices.”

This initiative is part of a larger 3-year strategic plan by the Parking Authority focused on supporting economic development, enhancing the parking experience, and increasing quality of life in the Philadelphia Region.

Joe Ashdale, PPA Board Chair stated that the PPA Board is committed to providing the resources to implement this type of innovation. “By applying technology to parking and transportation problems we will provide better public service and improve the efficiency with which those services are delivered – which is the heart of our mission,” added Ashdale.

About PPA

ppa.jpgThe mission of the Philadelphia Parking Authority (PPA) is to provide the City of Philadelphia with comprehensive parking management services and to support its economic development. The Parking Authority’s responsibilities range from managing parking and related traffic management programs on the streets of Philadelphia, to building and operating parking lots and garages.
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