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Mobile pay to park: Boaters get payment app

By Staff | Jun 12, 2015

New technology will soon allow residents and visitors to use their mobile phones to pay for boat trailing parking at any of the city of Cape Coral’s five boat ramps.

On Monday, the city will launch the PassportParking Mobile Pay app for the Cape Coral Yacht Club, Rosen Park, Horton Park, BMX Park and Burnt Store boat ramps. With the new system, drivers will be able to pay to park from their smartphone, tablet or computer – all without having to visit the meter.

The app is free to download from the iPhone App Store and Android Google Play.

Kerry Runyon, superintendent of parks with the Cape Coral Parks and Recreation Department, explained that the five ramps currently have meters that people pay.

“We’re going to replace that,” she said. “The old machines are going to be taken out.”

The city had been researching the switchover for approximately a year.

“We looked at a couple different companies,” Runyon said, noting that PassportParking has received great reviews from others. “It’s all been a positive thing – and it’s very very easy for the user.”

For those without a smartphone who cannot download the app, they can still use the service if they have a cellphone. Simply set up an online account with Passport at: ppprk.com/park/.

They then pay to park by calling or texting a telephone number provided.

“It pays for your parking for the day,” she said.

For those without a cellphone, the drop boxes will remain on site at the ramps.

“The drop boxes will stay,” Runyon said.

For those who want to skip the daily fee, annual boat trailer parking passes will continue to be sold at the Cape Coral Yacht Club and at the Parks and Recreation counter at City Hall for $50 each.

The daily parking fee at the ramps is $10.

“That fee has not changed,” she said, adding that there is a 35 cent fee to use the app.

According to Runyon, the city made the switch for several reasons.

“A lot of people have smartphones,” she said.

By getting rid of the meters, the city will save on repairs, avoid paper jams when the humidity creeps up and eliminate labor costs to maintain them. Parts range from $500, to $17,000 for a new meter.

“We’re saving the city some money,” Runyon said. “It does get costly.”

Parkers can manage their parking through the Passport Mobile web app, which is accessible from any device with an Internet connection. The app also alerts users when they are running out of time.

“It’ll send you reminders,” she said. “It’s a good system to use to keep track.”

Passport Mobile payment systems are used in over 1,000 locations in 43 states and provinces throughout the United States and Canada, with clients such as Chicago, Toronto and Boston.

For more information, contact the city’s Marine Services Division at (239) 574-0809.