Tag Archives for: Smart Parking Meters

Municipal Parking Services’ Smart Meter Technology In Flint Michigan Selected As Finalist For 2020 IDC Smart Cities North America Awards

February 20, 2020




Municipal Parking Services’ Smart Meter Technology In Flint Michigan Selected As Finalist For 2020 IDC Smart Cities North America Awards




MINNETONKA, Minn – Smart city technology company Municipal Parking Services, Inc. (“MPS”) announced today that its Sentry System parking management technology is the source technology for Flint AutoPark, a project that has been identified as one of three finalists in the Transportation Infrastructure category for the 2020 Smart Cities North America Awards sponsored by IDC Government Insights. The nominated MPS Sentry System technology has been rebranded locally as Flint AutoPark by the Flint, MI Downtown Development Authority (“Flint DDA”). MPS installed Sentry technology in Flint during the summer of 2019 and has been operating it as Flint AutoPark in conjunction with the Flint DDA as part of a public private partnership since October 2019.



“We are thrilled that Flint AutoPark has been named as a finalist for this prestigious award,” stated Brian Cassady, CEO of MPS. “The DDA leadership had a very unique and refreshing vision of how consumer-friendly regulated parking should operate, and fortunately they selected Sentry as the base technology to bring their concepts to life.”

The core capability which makes Sentry so unique is its ability to visually identify and document when a vehicle has arrived into a parking space. It can then monitor the vehicle throughout the parking session and finally recognize when the vehicle has exited. Those features allow Flint AutoPark to offer consumers unparalleled, flexible payment options.

“The idea is to facilitate a touchless, park-and-go experience for drivers rather than subjecting them to fumbling for coins, dropping credit cards in the snow and playing with a phone payment app,” explained Mark Moran, VP of R&D for MPS.

Sentry’s vision technology provides Flint’s consumers with several payment options that align with a more convenient experience. Consumers may manually pay for their parking at any time during their parking session, whether that is at the beginning, middle or end, without risking a ticket. In addition, consumers may pre-pay for parking prior to enforcement hours, and the system will then apply payments when enforcement starts. And of course, the system still allows consumers all the typical payment methods offered by more conventional parking technology such as via mobile app, credit card or any denomination of coins, except pennies. But the ultimate convenience is Flint AutoPark’s Concierge Service. It allows consumers to register their license plates(s) for an automatic touchless payment process that involves no user intervention. After a vehicle arrives, the system recognizes the plate and automatically debits from the driver’s Concierge account for the time the vehicle is parked, and the user never has to use their phone app or access a parking meter for the transaction. This is great for anyone who makes multiple deliveries throughout the day. In addition, it’s extremely convenient for a company to prepay one account and list all their vehicle license plates, so that their employees never need to worry about paying a meter, and owners never have to worry about getting a ticket.

In the event a consumer doesn’t pay, the system is capable of documenting and reporting the violation to an enforcement officer. The officer can then remotely evaluate the evidence and, if desired, issue a citation by mail.

Since going live in the fall, the system has produced dramatic improvements in parker behavior. Flint’s parking payment compliance rate, which was 40%, has steadily improved to exceed 65% and is on-track to reach 90% by mid-April. And violations per space per day have steadily fallen as consumers have become familiar with the new system and taken advantage of its convenient payment options.

Gerard Burnash, Flint D.D.A. Director, said “This system has allowed us to integrate multiple payment options to our visitors for the most effortless parking experience possible. In addition, it has helped promote the use of off-street long-term parking, freeing up valuable parking for retail business, and has increased revenue. This is a win-win-win for everyone involved.”

Winners of the Smart Cities North America Awards will be honored at the Smart Cities Connect Conference & Expo to be held April 6–9 in Denver, Colorado.

The International Data Corporation (“IDC”) Is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology, telecommunications, and consumer technology markets.



Brian Cassady

Municipal Parking Services, Inc.

651 383-4083



Gerard Burnash

Flint Downtown Development Authority

810 767-2297




February 02, 2018







NEW GLASGOW, NS, February 2nd, 2018 – J.J. MacKay Canada Limited (MacKay Meters), a leading manufacturer of smart parking meters, and HotSpot Parking Inc. (HotSpot), a Fredericton based company best known for their pay-by-phone parking and transit solutions, today announced a fully integrated parking solution for the City of Moncton, New Brunswick. The City of Moncton recently purchased several hundred new mkBeacon™ wireless smart parking meters from MacKay. The City’s MacKay mkBeacon parking meters will now communicate their paid status to HotSpot’s Realtime Parking Map, helping drivers find available parking spaces by using HotSpot’s mobile application.



Available metered parking spots appear as green P’s on HotSpot’s Realtime Parking Map (http://realtimeparking.ca/). When a driver pays for parking with either coins or credit card at any new mkBeacon parking meter, the meter communicates that paid status to HotSpot and the parking spot then changes to red on the map. When time expires on the meter, the parking spot icon shown on the map changes back to green, allowing drivers to recognize that the parking spot is available. Similarly, when paying for a parking spot using the HotSpot Parking mobile app, the corresponding space would turn red on the parking map and back to green when time expires.


“We are always looking at ways to make parking easier and more efficient for the parker. With this system now available in Moncton, we have achieved both of those goals quite effectively. The new mkBeacon smart meters now installed on-street, along with the HotSpot mobile pay app real time parking occupancy map, make the City of Moncton one of Canada’s most advanced parking systems. It’s fantastic that two Atlantic Canadian companies can bring this type of technology to the streets of an Atlantic Canadian city,” said James MacKay, VP of Sales at MacKay Meters.


“Municipalities have been asking for real-time parking availability for years and technology is finally reaching a place where a municipality of any size can introduce the best parking experience possible to their citizens. We’re proud to pioneer this in the City of Moncton, but this a feat achievable by any motivated municipality,” said Phillip Curley, CEO of HotSpot.


“By offering Realtime Parking and giving users multiple ways to pay for an on-street parking space, it has made the experience of parking that much easier. The new MacKay mkBeacon smart meters with our HotSpot (Pay By Cell) service has also allowed us to reduce redundancies within our system and streamline the service for our users,” said Stephane Thibodeau, Transportation and Parking Coordinator with the City of Moncton.


About MacKay Meters


For more than fifty-eight years, and with over 500,000 meters sold, MacKay Meters has been providing customers worldwide with innovative parking systems including quality single and multi-space parking meters. www.mackaymeters.com/


Contact: James MacKay VP of Sales MacKay Meters

1 (888) 462-2529 x295



About HotSpot


HotSpot has built and implemented a simple-to-use mobile application for visitors to ease their access to municipalities and provide seamless, enjoyable experiences. Through realizing transportation as the point of opportunity for citizens, HotSpot has developed a tool to connect municipalities to their citizens and provide the best possible city experience. www.htsp.ca



Phillip Curley CEO

HotSpot Parking Inc. 1 (506) 897-1774