Mumbai: BMC’s web-based parking system still a distant dream

  • Sanjana Bhalerao, Hindustan Times, Mumbai
  • Updated: Jan 06, 2015 17:01 IST

In the coming weeks, vehicle owners will have to make do with the steep hike in parking charges in A ward (Fort, Churchgate, Colaba) as the civic body rolls out the revised parking policy, but its ambitious plan to monitor parking spaces is yet to see the light of the day.

In an attempt to curb malpractices at pay-and-park lots in the city, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) had decided to switch to a web-based system.

“We will initially roll out the scheme with civic staff collecting the parking charges in the civic-owned parking lots in A-ward. We will soon float tenders for handheld devices and software,” additional municipal commissioner, SVR Srinivas said.

The proposed system, first mooted in 2011, would print receipts at civic parking zones via a hand-held device. But after two pilot projects and numerous assurances to launch the system in the last two years, the civic body still has no plan in place to make the payment method transparent.

In March 2013, the standing committee had passed a Rs75 lakh proposal for manning parking lots along with security, cash collection and the management of the devices. The civic body wanted to launch the scheme by May that year.

But its implementation suffered a setback because of a court case over the reservation of parking lots and the outsourcing of parking lot management. The BMC then planned to implement the system in civic-owned lots, but that too has not been put into practice.

According to the plan, all 92 BMC parking lots in the city will be linked to a centralised server and the staff at each of these lots will be given handheld devices to register the details of the parked vehicles. The devices, which will have pre-set parking charges, will automatically generate receipts based on the entry and exit times of vehicles. This would help reduce the possibility of overcharging and bring transparency to the system. The system also includes an option where motorists can book parking slots.

But civic officials said there was a need to revise the web-based system in light of the residential permits that are included in the revised parking policy.

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