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E-Z Pass Parking

City garages & lots should add E-Z Pass equipment.

Photo of Patrick Solomon
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Written by

This is a simple idea, that would make a difference to traffic caused by parking. Think about that time you were driving and there was a traffic jam because of a line of cars entering a parking garage. It happens everyday during rush hour, and adds time to everyones commute. E-Z pass has made getting on and off of toll roads quick and easy, and it can do the same for parking in the city. We should add the E-Z pass readers outside every city garage and lot. 

Describe who will use your solution (1,000 characters)

Most commuters have an EZ Pass. Anyone who wants to park in a city lot or garage will be able to pay with EZ Pass.

Describe your solution's stage of development

  • Pilot - you have implemented your solution in a real-world scenario

Size of your team or organization

  • I am submitting as an individual

Funding Request

  • $25,000

Describe how you would pilot your idea (1000 characters)

To pilot this, I would identify 1-2 parking garages that have a line during rush hour. Once the garages are picked, I would take a week and see how long the line gets at different times during rush hour, and time how long it takes the average person to enter the garage. There are two different ways that I would test this solution. In both situations I would keep the garages that are being tested secret, and the days of the testing secret. On the test days we would once again measure the average time spent getting into a garage, and see how long the lines get outside the garage. First I would try to work with the makers of EZ Pass to see if they would install the hardware for free during the test period. They can also use the information we learn as a business case for themselves. This would give the best data. The alternate option is making the garage or lot free for the day, and have a garage attendant open and close the gate as cars approach.

Describe how you would measure the success of your pilot (1000 characters)

The real success of this would be if lines of cars on streets were reduced due to people entering garages quicker. A shorter line to get into a garage causes less traffic on the street.

4 comments

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Photo of Idrees Mutahr
Team

Hello Patrick, thanks for the submission! I think this idea does have potential, but you would need to complete a few of the areas in the submission form. Challenge contestants can win up to $100K to pilot their project at the conclusion of the challenge, so how you would pilot this in Pittsburgh, and how much you estimate the pilot would cost would need to be addressed!

Photo of Patrick Solomon
Team

Hi Indrees,

To pilot this, I would identify 1-2 parking garages that have a line during rush hour. Once the garages are picked, I would take a week and see how long the line gets at different times during rush hour, and time how long it takes the average person to enter the garage.

The chosen garages and day of testing will be kept secret. On this day, we would make it free to park at those garages for people entering during rush hour, without telling people ahead of time, so that the normal commuting crowd comes to the garage. An attendant will have to sit outside the gate and press a button to open an close it. We would study how the line forms outside the garage, and the average entering time. On the day of the test, it be good to count the number of vehicles entering that have an E-Z pass.


An alternate testing method would be to work with the makers of E-Z pass and have hardware installed for a test period. Not everyone has an E-Z pass. If we can install the hardware for a test period free of charge or cheaply, it give a better test.

Photo of Diana Avart
Team

Hello Patrick Solomon ,

I love the way you are applying a proven approach to a different transportation challenge that can benefit from a similar, more streamlined process for frequent users.

When you have a chance, please be sure to add the additional context you provided in your followup comment (and more, if available!) to your actual submission so that it can be more easily considered by reviewers. And as Idrees mentioned, it may be helpful to think about a general funding request and implementation plan for the pilot that aligns with the scope of the Challenge, which will provide winning team(s) with up to $100K to bring their mobility idea to life.

The more you can describe what a successful pilot in Pittsburgh would look like, the better!

- Diana, Facilitator

Photo of Patrick Solomon
Team

Thank you for the feedback Diana. I have updated the post.