Parking in Seaside Heights should be a bit more convenient next season, as the borough plans to replace all of its parking meters and kiosks with new machines that include the latest technology.
“We are going to remove all of the remaining mechanical meters as well as the existing kiosks,” said Borough Administrator Christopher Vaz.
Much of the town, especially the portion closest to the boardwalk, is covered by kiosks. But they have aged and sometimes do not function properly, officials say. Then there are the mechanical meters along side streets – they have become obsolete as fewer people carry change and more use cards and payment apps on a daily basis.
“The bottom line is, they’re old, they don’t work well and we’ve had problems for two summers,” said Vaz.
The borough council is hoping to award a contract for the new kiosk system in October, which will cover all of the areas now under the domain of coin-operated meters and numbered spaces. The new kiosks will allow visitors to pay using a mobile app on their smartphones – so if the beach is calling for one more hour of sunbathing, no one will have to head back to the car to feed the meter. The borough will place the new system only in the areas currently designated as paid parking areas; there is no plan to expand the number of paid spaces in town.
The days of carrying change will be over as well.
“These kiosks will not accept change; it will be credit cards and bills only,” in addition to the app-based payment system, said Vaz.