Virtual Parking Permits Coming Soon

December 10, 2020
TPS vehicle with ALPR camers
TPS Deploying Automatic License Plate Readers
With an estimated implementation date of Summer 2021 of virtual parking permits,Transportation & Parking Services (TPS) will soon be phasing out decal and pay-and-display permits. Decals on the windshield will become a thing of the past and remembering to transfer your permit between vehicles will no longer be an issue. (Keep in mind though, the policy will remain in place that only one vehicle associated with the permit will be allowed to park on campus at any given time.) 
Virtual permits will allow the flexibility of immediately issuing and deactivating parking privileges as well. For example, when a staff or faculty member leaves the university, TPS can immediately deactivate their permit. This eliminates the need for the individual to bring their permit back to the TPS office and avoids inadvertent accruals of fees after a leave or separation.
Campus visitors will be provided with more convenient options to purchase hourly and daily parking permits, and through more efficient parking policy enforcement, TPS anticipates greater adherence to parking policies. This will ensure staff and faculty have access to spaces designated for their use and improve compliance.
Moving to a virtual permit system requires the use of Automated License Plate Recognition (ALPR). TPS vehicles will be equipped with instruments that are able to verify parking privileges by matching the vehicle plate to the parking database.  
ALPR is quickly becoming the standard in parking management. UC Los Angeles, UC Merced, UC San Diego, and UC Davis Medical Center have already been utilizing this technology. Additionally, all of the other UC campuses are looking at moving to virtual permits over the next few years.
In the coming months, you may receive an email from TPS requesting that you link your vehicle to your permit. The intent is to employ the ALPR system alongside physical permits for a period of time in order to ensure the system is fully operational for the conversion. Launching the new system in conjunction with the present permitting system will allow TPS to ensure the technology is working effectively and make for a smoother transition. Assuming everything goes smoothly, UCSB’s parking permits will likely be virtual entirely by 2021-2022, with residential parking areas expected to be completely operational by that time. 
By Laura Hoffman