The proposed online parking system, expected to kick off by May, will not just monitor the 92 civic parking lots across the city and stop contractors from fleecing motorists, it will also regulate on-street parking.
Once the system is implemented, resident permits will be issued to locals for parking their vehicles on roads, which will give the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) an additional source of revenue.
A large number of vehicles are parked along roadsides in the city, which is terribly short of space to accommodate the rising number of private vehicles. “With this, we will be able trace cars that are parked illegally,” said Aseem Gupta, additional municipal commissioner.
“Our staff will be equipped with handheld devices, which will detect vehicles that are parked on roads without permits through the online system as the device will have the list of registered vehicles with permits.”
At a later stage, the BMC also plans to upgrade the web-based system to allow Mumbaiites to hunt for and book parking slots in any of the 92 civic-owned parking lot across the city through an app (see box).
“We need to first assess how the system works after it is implemented. Depending on its success, we will execute the later plan whereby citizens will be able to access the availability of parking slots online,” said a senior official from the BMC’s traffic department, on condition of anonymity.
Transport activists are guarded in their opinion on the feasibility of the online system.
“The BMC has repeatedly flouted its own rules at parking lots. We need to know the guidelines that will be set for the functioning of the new system.
"Only once it’s implemented will we know whether it is foolproof or not,” said Mohammad Afzal, an activist who has been working towards curbing parking violations.