When it comes to parking in Darien, the town is looking to make a "quantam leap" into the future, according to Administrative Officer Karl Kilduff.
The Board of Selectmen is considering ridding the town of its parking systems in favor of newer technology, though that technology will come with a price, which will most likely be reflected in the fees.
While no decisions were made, the BOS discussed the situation at length Monday night.
Kilduff submitted two memos to the board for consideration. One discussed the advances in technology to parking in town and the other discussed a possible change in fees.
"In lieu of doing the daily scratch-off ticket we use for covered parking, which is certainly unique, we'd be looking into pay stations," Kilduff said.
According to the memo, pay stations can be connected electronically to report how much revenue has been collected. They can also accept payments with debit and credit cards, and allow the town to retain more of the money generated by daily parkers.
With the current voucher system, the revenue is split between the town, the company distributing the voucher and the local stores selling them. New pay stations would increase town revenue.
Kilduff also mentioned that parking passes would be able to be renewed online, and that the pay station technology also works with a license plate reader.
"Our application of a license plate reader will be looking for something that's not supposed to be there," Kilduff said. "The license plate reader gives us technology to move through lots faster and know who's supposed to be there or who's not supposed to be there. It will help us identify that quickly and be able to take action. It will also help us better quantify utilization so we have a little bit more of a fact-based process, understanding who is where."
Another proposed technology was that of "pay-by-app," which would allow residents to pay for daily parking with a smartphone app.
"Increased use of the pay-by-app benefits our tech-savvy residents," Kilduff said in his memo.
"The more people that use the app, the less pay stations there would be?" Selectman Gerald Nielsen Jr. asked.
Kilduff explained that he hoped there would be a "rapid adoption of the pay-by-app system."
email@example.com; 203-972-4407; @megdariennews