When it comes to university campuses, I think that a lot of students can agree that parking is a source of unnecessary stress. A lot of campuses are beginning to implement the use of license plate recognition (LPR) cameras in order to alleviate some parking issues. This technology has been around for decades and has been used for other purposes like law enforcement and even in fast-food. Here’s a few reasons why LPR cameras are becoming more commonplace in university parking lots.
As the years go by, more and more people are enrolling into universities and the majority of them drive a vehicle. Due to this, university parking lots tend to be expansive, with hundreds of parking spaces to handle demand. Since there’s so many cars, parking enforcement can be tricky. Before LPR cameras, campuses would require their students to purchase a parking permit which was a physical sticker that was placed on the car. Patrollers would then be hired to check each vehicle periodically to ensure that only people who have paid for parking are using the lots. This method of enforcement was not very effective because it was time-consuming so only a few lots could be checked at a time. LPR cameras help to automate parking enforcement for more efficiency. Now, the license plate is the parking permit and LPR cameras are the patrollers. If a vehicle gets a hit from the camera, a ticket will be automatically billed to the student account the license plate is registered under.
When there are so many vehicles at one time, there are bound to be some accidents. Campus lots tend to be busy and crowded so hit-and-runs are a common issue with no way to find who is responsible. However, this is now possible with the help of LPR cameras. Even if someone hits another car and runs off, the license plate number can be given to the university and the car would be flagged so the authorities will be alerted when the car returns. Not only that, if a student bumps into another car whose owner wasn’t there, the person could be tracked down by looking at which other cars were in the area at that time.
Besides protecting vehicles, LPR cameras offer better protection for the campus against dangerous intruders. When students and staff members purchase a parking permit, they are required to register their license plates for identification. If the LPR camera doesn’t recognize a plate, an alert can be sent to campus authorities who will assess the issue. This keeps out unauthorized visitors and potential threats.
Campus parking lots always cause complaints due to the lack of available spaces, but some of that stress is being alleviated thanks to LPR cameras. LPR cameras mean better enforcement which opens up parking spaces and they have the added benefit of better campus security. Although parking issues will never be completely eliminated, LPR cameras definitely help.