Delhi to have automated parking lots soon

16 Jan, 2011, PTI

Automated parking-the next big thing in Delhi

NEW DELHI: Like in many global cities, motorists in Delhi may soon be able to park their cars in parking lots by swiping a credit card or smart card at automated kiosks without any human intervention. As part of efforts to overcome the problem of unregulated parking, the city government has decided to introduce an automated parking management system, using sophisticated equipment.

Motorists will even be able to check availability of space, number of cars at the parking facility, fees and other related information online and accordingly, have the option of booking slots by paying online. Officials said the project was conceived as it was found that unregulated parking had significantly shrunk road space across the city resulting in traffic mess.

According to statistics, there are nearly 65 lakh vehicles registered in the city. The number of vehicles in Delhi is more than the total number in Mumbai, Chennai and Kolkata. On an average over 1,000 vehicles are added to the city roads everyday. Parking meters, which are used for automated parking facilities in cities like New York and Los Angeles, will be installed initially in Karol Bagh.

"The pilot project has been given the go ahead. Based on the result of the pilot project, the decision on introducing it on a large scale will be taken," a senior official of the transport department said. A parking meter collects money in exchange for the right to park a vehicle in a particular place for a limited amount of time. Information on space and payment, among other data, is carried on a display board attached to it.

15 per cent of the road space in Delhi are lost due to haphazard parking, the official said, adding, the national capital will be the only city in the country with such a parking facility. "If properly implemented, a vehicle owner will be able to park his car in a parking space by just inserting a currency note into a machine or by swiping a credit card or smart card into a slot," he said.

Some newer parking meters have a sensor that can determine when a parking space has been vacated. The project has been conceived by Unified Traffic and Transportation Infrastructure Centre which was set up nearly two years ago to suggest measures to improvise traffic management in the city.

A German company recently gave a presentation to the Chief Secretary about how a parking meter can help in better management of traffic in Delhi.