White Rock's waterfront parking-meter system is getting an upgrade.

Convenience cited in waterfront pay-park upgrade

$400,000 estimate for new machines approved for White Rock waterfront

White Rock’s waterfront pay-parking system is getting a $400,000 upgrade.

The project – which includes the purchase of 37 new pay stations (including one spare) – received unanimous approval Monday evening.

In the city’s financial plan for five years, the upgrade is expected to boost efficiencies and be more convenient for the public.

One benefit named is that transactions will be processed on a “real-time” basis.

“For example, if there was a parking ticket issued, the system will know it… immediately,” city manager Dan Bottrill told Peace Arch News. “Right now, that information is downloaded after the fact. It has been problematic for people getting a ticket (who) want to pay it right away.”

Sandra Kurylo, the city’s director of financial services, told council the new pay stations are “a lot more updated technology than what the city currently has.”

Asked by Coun. Helen Fathers if there was a problem with the existing machines, Kurylo said they have been in place for about 10 years and are at the end of their useful life.

“We can’t even get a service contract for the city’s hardware anymore,” she said.

The majority of the new dispensers will be solar-powered, and the system will integrate with the city’s new land-based management system.

Bottrill said the upgrade will not lead to an increase in pay-parking rates, which are currently $3 an hour from May 1 to Oct. 31 and $1.50 an hour from Nov. 1 to April 30.

It will enable violation tickets to be paid at any city facility. Currently, they can only be paid at the planning and development services counter in city hall.

Kurylo said there is also flexibility with the new system, citing an option to have those who pay by credit card notified by text message just before their meter time expires.

Kurylo advised awarding one contract for the purchase and installation of the pay stations to Imperial Parking Canada Corporation, and a second contract – for the purchase of licences, installation of enforcement software and handheld devices and mobile printers – to Aparc Systems Ltd.

The budget for the upgrade is $475,000. Total estimated cost is $394,069.

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