Mayor Peter Carlisle announced Monday the city will soon launch a pilot project replacing coin-only parking meters with new solar-powered meters that also allow payment by credit and debit card and the addition of meter time via mobile phone.
"These new meters will provide more payment options for the convenience of drivers, while still retaining the coin-payment capabilities of traditional meters," Carlisle said. "Drivers should find the meters easy to use, and we believe parking citation volume may decrease because it will be easier to purchase the amount of parking time needed, rather than be limited by the number of coins available."
The pilot project will begin on June 4 with the installation of 110 meters in the Civic Center area.
The project will include 72 public parking spaces in the Civic Center garage, 10 public spaces in the Honolulu Police Department garage, and 28 spaces on South King and Punchbowl streets around Honolulu Hale.
The city will evaluate the pilot project and feedback from the public before deciding whether to install additional meters in other locations.
If the pilot project is successful, a second phase is planned for Downtown and Chinatown metered parking areas.
The new solar-powered meters are equipped with back-up batteries, self-monitor to identify any operational problems and use wireless technology to promptly notify technicians if any occur.
The meters are expected to help the city better manage parking by providing information on meter usage and allowing more flexible equipment control.
The new meters also have sensors that reset to zero once a vehicle drives away.
The wireless communication capability is also incorporated into the real-time online credit card authorization process, which meets the highest Visa and MasterCard standards for credit card information security.
No credit card information is ever stored on the meters or on any city information system.
Meter rates, maximum parking durations and enforcement practices will not be changed during the pilot project.
Additional information and a customer feedback system will be available at www.ipsgroupinc.com/honolulu .
You can see how the new parking meter works tonight on KITV4 News at 6.