There are more people in the world every year, and more of these people live in urban areas and own one or more vehicles per family. In other words, there are more vehicles in less space than ever before. And more vehicles in less space means we have to “stack them”. This is why more and more high-capacity car parks are popping up everywhere.
However, people who use parking garages, and perhaps even those considering a parking business, sometimes have misconceptions about parking management systems. In some cases, they may be reluctant to use the facilities because of these beliefs. This article will address some of the misconceptions and set the record straight.
The issues we will address are:
1. What is a car park access control system?
2. What types of systems are ideal?
3. How to manage multiple vehicles in a small space?
4. What do I need to carry or attach to my car to use parking?
5. Are the large car parks reserved for contract users?
In addition to the above, we’ll also reveal what it all has to do with Adaptive Recognition, a pioneer in Automatic License Plate Recognition (ANPR) and provider of some of the most advanced ANPR cameras in the industry.
Definition of parking access control systems
Managing a large car park with multiple types of users is a complex task.
In small car parks in rural areas, it is common to employ attendants who note the times of entry and exit from each car park, sometimes using a clock that stamps a ticket. The attendant then calculates the fee based on the time spent in the batch. Temporary grounds, such as those set up for a sporting or musical event, may charge a fixed fee for the duration of the event.
However, these manual methods become impractical in an urban garage that can house hundreds of vehicles. Thus, these facilities use various automation tools to make everyone’s life easier by speeding up the flow of cars entering and leaving the garage and ensuring that each car park pays its fee.
If you think parking garages are tricky to use and you need to have some kind of ID, read on. We will show you another way.
Also Read: Technological Advancements are Taking the Automotive Transportation Industry by Storm
Types of Parking Access Control Systems
As discussed above, a simple manual control by an attendant can already be considered a kind of access control system. Since this arrangement becomes more and more impractical every year, this is the last mention we will make of it.
Instead, let’s see what types of automated parking access control systems exist:
Electronically readable cards or windshield/bumper stickers
These systems are only effective for frequent users who have some sort of contractual arrangement with the mechanic.
A system in which a card or sticker contains RFID or other electronic code can provide some of the benefits of automation. However, it is not suitable for casual users without an established account with the garage.
If your installation uses this type of system, you will always need a human agent or an automatic timestamping ticket issuer for one-time or occasional users. Time-stamped tickets require vehicles to stop as they enter. If a customer deposits the ticket, it may be necessary for them to walk away from the ticket machine, so that they can open the car door and retrieve it. If they lose the ticket before leaving the garage, most places charge them a penalty. This penalty could be the maximum daily parking fee or even more – a surefire way to create an unhappy customer.
What are the most adaptable parking access control systems?
The most flexible parking access control systems use ANPR cameras. Once an ANPR camera acquires a license plate image, it doesn’t matter if it belongs to a car that’s never been seen in the garage before or someone who parks there every day and has a contract.
The system itself can check the plate number acquired from ANPR cameras against any database to determine which category it falls into and process it accordingly. If he is only there once and has no pre-arranged status with the garage, the system creates a record for him, including the time of entry. When the car leaves, the departure time is attached to this same record and the system calculates the appropriate charge. This is then either printed on a ticket/invoice or displayed on a screen for the driver, who can pay the fee in cash or by credit card.
Another advantage of an ANPR-based system is that it can identify stolen cars and vehicles involved in other crimes. You don’t want them in your establishment, and enforcement authorities will appreciate you letting them know about such cars.
Maximized efficiency: are contract parking spaces and credentials required?
Thanks to the history generated by the ANPR, the system can accurately predict the space needed to accommodate the people to whom the operator has a contractual obligation. Although a few places may remain unoccupied, this capacity allows a high percentage of available places for occasional users without inconveniencing contract users.
Regarding the problem of possessing credentials, we explained earlier that the most flexible modern systems use ANPR cameras to recognize all comers. This means there is no need for printed tickets, bumper stickers or electronic cards, eliminating the hassle of lost or forgotten credentials, smudged or worn stickers etc.
ANPR cameras make parking access control systems flexible so space can be used more efficiently. No one needs to carry a special card or take a time-stamped ticket because the system takes care of everything automatically. License plate data recorded by plate recognition technology tells the system when a recognized vehicle enters the garage, or it generates a record for occasional users so they can be loaded correctly. In short, there are no lost documents or vehicles slipping through the system.
The Adaptive Recognition website can tell you more about the options available to meet your unique needs. Each page of the site includes a contact button to discuss your situation with the company’s experts.