When a car leaves one of the parking facilities that Parking Management Inc. operates around the Washington region, a computer server in its District headquarters knows in less than a second.
Now a partnership with Baltimore upstart Parking Panda could allow the company to tally its available spaces before a motorist even enters the garage, or leaves their house, by providing a Web site and mobile app where commuters can reserve a space in advance.
The partnership, which starts in the District today, is only the latest way technology has begun to transform PMI’s once-straightforward business of parking in exchange for payment.
“It is completely a data-driven business,” said Charles Lancaster, director of sales and marketing. “It’s not big contracts. It’s thousands of little, little deals. And that’s what the social media world is all about.”
The company’s foray into the latest technology trends began last summer when PMI sold an online voucher for discounted parking through daily deal purveyor Groupon that netted about $20,000 in three days for the company, Lancaster said.