In March of 2020 we asked our Business Members the question "Is Parking Dead?". At that time and, in the early days of our then new normal, the general consensus was that whilst change was afoot, parking was very much still active. With that in mind, let's have a look at why we think parking is, without a doubt, alive and kicking and for certain verticals going to make a dramatic comeback.
The pandemic was a worrying time for many industries, including ours. As lockdowns began worldwide, the predicted and real impact on parking was severe in many cases. With previously bustling cities becoming somewhat apocalyptic, travel being ceased, and events being canceled seemingly indefinitely, it was a hard time for several verticals within parking.
However, it was not all doom and gloom. This time period has given us all time to reflect on what is important and, for business, has given us the chance to reprioritize projects that may have previously been delayed. Prior to the pandemic, consumers were already being conditioned to contactless solutions so the task of education was not in question but more about implementation. Improvements have been made and a definitive shift in parking towards touchless solutions has been evident. From waving at a ticket machine at Brussels Airport to generate a ticket, increased LPR and AVI solutions, and increased contactless payment options, our industry has responded in line with demand.
Now as we see our cities gradually return to life, and with more travel and events being realized, we can really see that parking is definitely not dead. Illinois-based daily, Chicago Sun Times, only just posted an article (dated 7th June) reporting that 'parking meter investors rake in $13M in profit despite pandemic'. It is expected that not only will the existing network of meters generate a break-even revenue stream for the city to pre-pandemic levels but that the installation of hundreds of new meters will mean the stream far exceeds what it was before. You can read the full article here.
We all know that parking can mean big money, especially for areas in which demand exceeds supply. Fox Business News yesterday announced the sale of a single parking space in Hong Kong for a record $1.3 million. Whilst this was a new record and far exceeding its predecessor, which clocked in at $969,000 for a downtown office parking space, the previous sum was also not to be sniffed at! With real estate a continually booming industry, particularly in the sought-after areas of Hong Kong, parking can be seen as the complementary brother to the arguably more attractive sister. Read the full Fox Business News article here.
So, as our industry and others pick up the pace, have a look at our previous blog, which includes the video of when we asked our Business Members "Is Parking Dead" and see how many of the predictions from March 2020 came true.
We predict the events industry will rise in phoenix-like fashion and, as we all rush towards normality and freedom, let's remember that parking is now and always will be a necessity. On June 28, 2021 we shall be hosting our first Venue Parking Network Event. Registration to join is completely FREE and will be open very soon. Save the date and don't miss your opportunity to connect with the best in Venue Parking solutions to ensure that your customers' first event back, post-pandemic, will start and end with stress-free parking!