By tech editor Ian Bush
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Paying for on-street parking in Philadelphia soon will be just an app away.
The board of the Philadelphia Parking Authority today gave a thumbs-up to a system called Pango, a free smartphone app that allows you to feed the meter (or kiosk) with your cell phone.
To set up, Pango takes your name, phone number, license plate number, and payment information.
Then, says Pango president Neil Edwards, the rest is easy when you pull into a spot.
“On the meter or on a sign you’ll see a zone number of the location you’re going to park,” he explains.
Choose how long you’re staying, press the app’s start button, “and you’re on your way,” he says.
Edwards says the system makes it easy to put another quarter in the meter,virtually, from wherever you are, “up to what’s permitted by the city ordinance.”
The PPA wants to charge more for adding time to your meter by mobile app, to encourage turnover of parking spaces.
Pango also offers spot scouting, on street and in garages.
“We will intelligently route you to open parking spaces,” Edward says.
Pango will supplement, not replace, current kiosks and meters. There’s a one-cent fee for using it, and a toll-free number for those who don’t have a smartphone.
The PPA hopes to begin testing by the end of the summer, with a broad rollout early next year.
The Nutter administration says it supports the app despite reservations about its potential economic impact.