Parking tickets drop 29%, rates may increase

Green P app for mobile devices has helped Toronto drivers, but at what cost?

East York resident Lori Arnall says the Green P mobile app has eased her worries about getting a parking ticket.

 “I like how (the app) tells me my remaining time. I don’t need to walk back and scramble for more change,” said Arnall, who uses the app on a weekly basis. “I don’t think I will be getting a parking ticket any time soon.”

It’s been 10 months since the app was launched to help local drivers pay for parking throughout Toronto. Since then, the number of parking tickets issued has plummeted by 29 per cent.

According to statistics from Toronto Police Services, over 200,000 tickets were issued in the 10 months that followed the October 2016 addition of Toronto’s street parking the app’s features.

That’s a decrease of nearly one-third from the 261,000 tickets issued in the 10 months prior to October 2016. Approximately 33 per cent of parking transactions are made through the mobile app.

The decline in issued tickets has affected the City of Toronto’s revenue by approximately $1.5 million in loss of money from fines, according to Anthony Fabrizi, manager of Revenue Services for the City of Toronto. He says the decrease in issued tickets and revenue is “an excellent trade-off for more compliance.”

However, the price of parking in some Green P spaces could soon increase, with some rates potentially increasing up to 50 per cent, according to a recent Toronto Parking Authority report. The increases are expected to result in an annual revenue increase of $3.5 million for the authority.

Some of the biggest hikes are focused on East York, around Danforth Avenue, Coxwell Road and Broadview Avenue north of the Danforth.

“The goal is, in effect, to establish pricing that ensures some parking spaces are always available for patron use,” Andrew Koropeski of the Toronto Parking Authority said in the report. “The level-of-service used for usage is 85 per cent. Anything greater than 85 per cent is considered at/over capacity.”

The Green P app was created by a North Carolina-based developer Passport. In 2018, the app will carry a new feature for Toronto, which will let users know parking spot availability estimates in various high-traffic locations, based on prior historical data and algorithms.

Passport also intends to extend the app to Montreal drivers in the new year.