THURSDAY MORNING EDITORIAL — So now, if you’re at the hair dresser’s and you’re running out of time at the parking kiosk, you can pull out your smartphone and dial in some more time, assuming you’ve gone through the steps of setting up an account.
It’ll cost you 35 cents per “session.”
The phone app for downtown parking was supposed to be operational quite some time ago but was delayed due to one thing or another. As explained in The Armchair Mayor News back on July 9, a few bugs had to be worked out.
The City estimates that about 20 per cent of those who park downtown will use the smartphone app.
So, one in five will find it a happy convenience. Clearly, however, it’s not a necessity nor even a major enhancement. We could live without it.
What we can’t live without is improvement to the kiosks themselves. Aside from their glacial speed, the thing that gives them an ‘F’ is those infernal screens that you have to crouch and squint at to figure out.
The City has been checking out replacements that are bigger and easier to read, but is hesitating because of the price being asked by the supplier. If the City can get a better deal, it will replace the screens on the 90 downtown kiosks. If not, presumably we’ll have to keep swearing at the old ones.
Well, here’s the answer. Take out a loan, buy the new screens and put a 35-cent-an hour surcharge on parking until their paid for. Never mind the phone app. Drivers would gladly pay it just to remove the frustration of dealing with those unreadable screens that should never have been purchased in the first place.