Ocean City Readying For Summer By Making Parking Easier

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Ocean City is gearing up for the summer season by making parking easier for visitors. The town plans to install 840 parking sensors in six municipal lots near the boardwalk. These sensors will help guide drivers to available parking spots.

The sensors will be screwed into existing parking blocks and will relay real-time information about parking availability to a networked system. Digital signs placed at strategic locations will then display the number of open spots in each lot.

Frank Donato, Ocean City’s Director of Finance, explained to WCAU-TV how it works: "We’ll use the existing parking blocks here and a sensor can be screwed right into the parking block which will sense whether or not a vehicle is in the stall."

This new system aims to reduce time and frustration spent looking for parking. Brandon Pettit of Maurice River Township said, "I feel like I try to spend more time trying to find a spot rather than actually being on the boardwalk and on the beach." He believes that having this extra information ahead of time could really help.

Ocean City Mayor Jay Gillian expressed his optimism to WCAU-TV about this initiative saying, "Our campaign is, ‘There’s always a spot in Ocean City.'"

The new technology should be available by early summer or definitely by mid-summer according to Donato. Similar technology has been successfully used at airport locations.

In addition to this initiative, Ocean City's website also displays a map of all municipal and privately-owned parking lots. The boardwalk area and downtown have nearly 4,000 spaces available for car parking including metered street parking.

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