Automation at downtown Auburn parking garage nearly complete

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The city of Auburn is moving ahead with updates to the Lincoln Street parking garage. After completion, the garage will fully automated. When you pull into the garage you will get a ticket out of the machine with a time stamp of arrival time. Upon exit you will have the option to pay with cash or card. The garage allows the first two hours of parking for free.

The street level parking is getting a makeover as well. There will be an automated kiosk to replace the current metered parking, but no free parking option on the street. The city is also making updates to make the garage more accessible to get to and from for pedestrians. The garage also will feature a clever design that features the corresponding street names in the stairwells.

Superintendent of Public Works Mike Talbot said in a presentation to the Auburn City Council Thursday that automated ticketing equipment has been installed at both the entrance and exit lanes, but the garage is still staffed with an employee in the booth until the equipment is up and running. Talbot said he expects the internet service to be installed as soon as Friday.” An increasing number of garages are adapting this automated model. Over time automation saves money and other resources. From a loss prevention perspective, automation drastically decreases employee theft. Staffing is also another alleviated concern; automated pay stations don’t call in sick. There is reduced maintenance as pay stations need service twice a month compared with meters which require service up to three times each week.

Ease of use is just another one of the many benefits, multiple rates can be programmed into the units to allow for promotional rates, extended stays and free weekend and holiday parking. All rates can be programmed from a central computer instead of manually adjusting each individual meter. The sidewalks will look less cluttered. Just a few pay stations can manage all the parking spaces on an entire block. So, it’s no surprise garages and metered parking are adapting this new technology at an exponential rate.  

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