Saturday, October 06, 2007

Parking in Chicago: The Need to Innovate

It is encouraging to read that the city of Chicago is seeking for ways to improve the parking experience in the city.

They are implementing one part of a solution I proposed in my 2003 thesis project: theLINC Parking System (creating an digital parking infrastructure for a city environment).

Earlier this year Chicago walked away from a more ambitious plan to create a city-wide WiFi network, which was the core concept in my proposal.

The challenge for any large city grappling with the parking issue is finding a solution that addresses multiple layers of problems associated with managing public spaces, while building inter-agency collaboration and leverging technological innovations. Any city that takes on the opportunity must be willing to develop a new model for managing the public spaces. The benefit will be a city able to face the 21st century with an infrastructure that supports growth, new revenue stream as well as an enhanced quality of life of its citizens.

Currently, Chicago appears to be approaching the opportunities around parking without coordination between agencies. Therefore, it can be expected that a quality and sustainable solution will not be achieved. It will take broader support from the city's leaders along with a systematic rethinking of the problem.

Tribune Article

Tribune Article Leasing Meters

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