The City of Moose Jaw’s new parking app is proving to be a hot commodity after more than 600 people downloaded the software in just one month.
City hall’s information technology department selected Hot Spot Parking Inc. during the second quarter of this year to produce the app for the municipality. The department also worked with other city departments and the software company to implement the app-based parking service with the existing parking meters. This allowed residents and visitors to park with the new app or continue to use the coin-operated meters.
The app went live at the start of July, and by July 29, 616 users had downloaded it to their phones.
“It’s a very good uptake on it right away. (Parking meter) stickers have been received and will be installed as soon as possible,” city manager Jim Puffalt said during the recent city council meeting while discussing statistics from the second quarter.
The cost of the app is based on a convenience fee model, which means users will pay a fee of 20 cents per parking transaction. Or, if they are regular users, they will pay a monthly fee of $2 or a yearly fee of $20.
Coun. Crystal Froese expressed her appreciation for the parking app and wondered if city hall could see how many visitors and out-of-town people used it.
The IT department does not have those statistics, said manager Wade McKay, while he was unsure how it would be possible to track whether a licence plate was from Moose Jaw or elsewhere.
“It would be interesting to see how many visitors we have,” replied Froese.
Coun. Doug Blanc was equally interested in the phone app and wondered if the IT department could track how many people paid with their phone versus those who used coins.
There is no data available right now about that query, but the IT department will reach a point where it will have that information, McKay replied. He would attempt to include that type of data in the next quarterly report.
The next regular city council meeting is Monday, Sept. 13.