The New Paltz Village officials are currently looking to introduce an app to New Paltz residents and visitors, which would allow them to pay for parking on their smartphone or mobile device.
Although the development of this app is still under consideration, it is almost certain that the app would work alongside the meters in the village that currently only accept coin payments. The app would only give people the option to pay for parking in the Village with their credit card.
One of the main parking apps that New Paltz officials are considering is the Whoosh! app. Whoosh! is free and available for download on Apple and Android devices.
According to the Whoosh! website, the app offers many other benefits besides allowing users to pay for parking with their credit card. When used, Whoosh! can tell exactly where a user had parked using the smartphone’s GPS system. The parking payments are then electronically sent to the town’s parking staff. The app also has the benefit of potentially preventing parking tickets with the app’s alert system. When the parking time is close to expiration, the app sends an alert directly to the user’s phone and gives the user the option to extend their time in the parking space.
Mayor Tim Rogers plans on using a parking app to add flexibility for payments at the meters in the Village.
“There has been interest from folks in the community who want the additional flexibility so it’s just a service,” Rogers said.
As of right now, Mayor Rogers has not engaged in a set plan with any phone app company, but he has worked closely with the developers of the app. The Whoosh! app has been used in Kingston for over a year. Mayor Rogers has spoken with the Kingston supervisor of parking and said they are “pleased with the functionality of the app.” Rogers believes that there is an additional benefit to using Whoosh! One said benefit would be that people can travel from New Paltz to Kingston and only have to use one mobile app to pay for parking.
“I think the fact that if someone is up in Kingston periodically and down here, that they only have one phone app and they’re already familiar, there’s some benefit there, and I believe SUNY is buying some machines that will work with the Whoosh! app as well,” Rogers said.
The only difference between paying the parking meters with coins and paying with credit card through the app is that there is an additional fee of 35 cents that the Whoosh! user would pay. In the New Paltz Village parking with the app would cost 85 cents to park for one hour. The Village would make no more than a 50-cent revenue regardless. The additional fee is standard among all parking apps and most of them charge a similar amount.
Second-year graphic design major Emalee Renjilian thinks the app will make parking in the Village a lot easier.
“It could be really convenient because I don’t carry coins a lot and I don’t think a lot of people do,” Renjilian said.
Rogers believes that residents will also be appreciative of the app as well.
“I think they’ll be appreciative that they’ll now have the option to pay using a credit card,” he said.
The Village officials do not currently have a set plan for the future of this app in New Paltz. However, if they do eventually decide to move forward with the Whoosh! app, it would take about 40 to 60 days to install the new meters. The company would then have to come and geotag each meter to allow the app to use a smartphone’s GPS system for the app to function properly.
“We’re a couple months out before this thing is up and running,” Rogers said.