A new smart phone app is online to help busy motorists in Ellicott City find the best available parking spot, Howard County Executive Ken Ulman announced today. From the County’s electric Nissan Leaf, he demonstrated how a new smart parking solution called Parker™ directs travelers in real time to open parking spots just like a GPS provides directions to Ellicott City itself.
“I am excited to bring new technology to historic Ellicott City, as the first in the Baltimore region, to make it easier for visitors and residents to access all that Main Street has to offer,” said Ulman. “It saves time, gas and frustration of driving around searching. From your smartphone, the closest available spot to park is only a few voice commands away.”
Implementing the Parker App by Streetline is one facet of how Howard County is enhancing parking opportunities in historic Ellicott City. As part of this project, sensors have been installed in each of nearly 600 parking spaces. Motorists can use the app like a GPS device to locate available parking and be informed if it is metered parking or one of 350 year-round, free spots in the city’s six downtown lots.
“I am hopeful this tool will be embraced in Howard County, as we are known for our tech-savvy community, even as we use such tools to enjoy the small town atmosphere that Ellicott City offers,” Ulman commented.
“By implementing Streetline’s real-time sensor technology and award-winning apps like Parker, Ellicott City is making searching for parking a thing of the past,” said Zia Yusuf, CEO of Streetline. “This helps residents and visitors enjoy all of the shops, restaurants and attractions of the city without having to worry about finding parking.”
Ulman further shared that all meter fees in nearly 150 Ellicott City parking spots will be waived from Thursday, November 22, 2012 to Monday, January 1, 2013. This year’s parking fee waiver of nearly six weeks will be the longest period offered by the County in recent years and comes at a time when this historic district is seeking to recover from a train derailment and storms affecting the lives and businesses of local residents and owners. The two-hour limit for parking on Main Street will remain in effect.
To download the free Parker app, please visit Google Play or the iTunes Store, as well as the Howard County Government website www.howardcountymd.gov for a video on using the Parker app.