Wednesday, September 12, 2007

The Future Of Parking Meters

SOURCE: (Business 2.0)

The new PVM parking meter will allow for payment by credit card and extra minutes without having to return to your car. 50 percent of parking fines go unpaid, according to one San Francisco study, so city halls have been on the lookout for a more convenient - and effective – parking meter.

Fred Mitschele is has designed the new generation of parking meters. Not only does his Photo Violation Meter allow you to swipe a credit card rather than hunt for quarters, but it will also call your cell phone when your time is up and give you the option of putting additional minutes on the meter via your cell phone.

"It really restores fairness to the whole system," says Mitschele, CEO of Photo Violation Technologies, based in Vancouver, British Columbia.

Mitschele has partnered with IBM (Charts, Fortune 500) to finance a $1 million trial. About 300 PVMs are currently installed in Niagara Falls, San Francisco, and Vancouver.

If all goes well and the cities buy the PVM when the trial ends in July 2008, Mitschele anticipates making as much as $200 million in five years. Scofflaws, beware: If you fail to pay, the PVM will snap a photo of your license plate.

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