Mayor Walsh Host Street Arcade Event to Celebrate the Expansion of ParkBoston App to All Boston Parking Meters
October 30, 2015
Mayor Martin J. Walsh today hosted a street arcade in the South End to celebrate the expansion of the ParkBoston app to all 8,000 metered parking spaces in the City of Boston. The app allows drivers to quickly and easily pay a meter with their mobile phone, avoiding the hassle of finding quarters or running back to meters to add more time before it expires. To date, there have been more than 150,000 downloads of the app.
"Updating parking meters so that they accept smartphone payments is a huge step forward in our goal of using technology to improve basic city services," said Mayor Walsh. "People are embracing ParkBoston as a new way to pay their parking meter, and there are currently over 100,000 active users of the app. We expect that number to continue to grow as people learn how easy and convenient it is to pay a parking meter with their phone."
The average number of transactions taking place per day in July was 3,361; in August, 4,665; and in September, 6,054. A one day high of 9,486 transactions was reached on October 29th.
"Developing and implementing ParkBoston has been a joint effort of the Mayor's Office of New Urban Mechanics and the Boston Transportation Department," said Chris Osgood, Boston's Chief of Streets. "It is a perfect example of the good work that is being accomplished as City agencies combine resources and collaborate to bring useful initiatives to our constituents."
As part of the celebration of the success of ParkBoston, the street party featured games such as Whack-a-Mole and Ms. Pacman, as well as ParkBoston, themed giveaways and a bubble hockey tournament with app users. These games are aimed at highlighting the entertaining ways that people can use their quarters now that they are no longer needed for parking meter payments. During the arcade event, Mayor Walsh teamed up with Boston Bruins alum Rick "Nifty" Middleton to challenge users in a competitive game of bubble hockey.
"ParkBoston is a customer service enhancement that provides both convenience and time-savings," said Boston Transportation Department Commissioner Gina Fiandaca. "Using this form of payment, there is no need to feed an individual meter or seek out a pay station. Motorists may simply pull into a legal space in a metered parking zone, access their ParkBoston account, and pay the meter fee remotely by phone with a credit card."
"We know that parking in Boston isn't always easy, but the ParkBoston app improves at least one aspect of the experience," said Kris Carter, co-chair of the Mayor's Office of New Urban Mechanics. "People have been using ParkBoston since it was first introduced in January as a pilot program in the Back Bay. Today is a way to bring a little bit of fun to the street and celebrate the completion of the citywide expansion of the ParkBoston program.
"The free ParkBoston app is also available online at Park.Boston.gov and through the App Store or Google Play for iPhone and Android users. A pay-by-voice option is offered for those without web-enabled phones.
Additionally, the Boston Meter Card will be phased out as a meter payment option. The Boston Meter Card, a pre-paid card sold in denominations from $5 to $100, was made available in 2011 as a parking meter payment option at single space meters. At that time, Boston's multi-space meter pay stations accepted dollar bills, quarters and credit cards, but the City's single space meters only accepted quarters.
Although Boston Meter Cards are no longer for sale, they will continue to be accepted as payment for another few months. Those with an existing Boston Meter Card balance have the option of transferring their balance into a ParkBoston account.
Please contact the Office of the Parking Clerk at 617-635-4410 for more information on completing this transaction. City Hall to Go Truck staff will also assist with this process. The truck's schedule may be viewed at http://www.cityofboston.gov/cityhalltogo/.
Passport, an industry leader in mobile payments, worked with the City of Boston in bringing ParkBoston to local motorists.