The Collegian
Saturday, February 24, 2024

Parking tickets should increase with new smart car and system

Bill Rawluk, parking specialist at the University of Richmond, is preparing to switch to a new electronic parking ticket system to go along with his new smart car.

The combination of Rawluk's smart car and the electronic parking ticket system will increase the number of parking tickets given on campus, he said.

The old ticket system, which will be used until the end of the fall semester, requires Rawluk to input the permit number of a vehicle into his handheld device to see where that vehicle is allowed to be parked.

If the car is parked illegally, he takes a picture of the license for documentation and puts a ticket under the windshield wipers. The new program will be much quicker and easier to use. In preparation for the transition, every registered vehicle on campus now has a barcode on its parking permit sticker, Rawluk said.

When the system is implemented, Rawluk will be able to scan the barcode with his handheld device and get all the information needed to write a ticket, he said.

"It will cut the time of writing a ticket in half for me," Rawluk said. "For my job, that is very important. I need to be able to check the car, write up a ticket if necessary and leave quick enough so that the vehicle's owner does not come out when I'm writing the ticket. It's all about avoiding confrontation."

The new system will also save time in the parking office. Parking services will no longer have to upload the license plate pictures in the office and complete the necessary paperwork needed to document the tickets, Rawluk said.

With the electronic system, the entire process will be done online. The only paper needed with the new system will be the parking ticket placed on the windshield wipers, Rawluk said.

Not only does Rawluk know that he will be more efficient in writing more tickets with the new system, but his new red smart car is already increasing his speed and consequently his efficiency in getting around campus, Rawluk said.

With the golf cart, on average, Rawluk could write around 50 to 60 tickets a day, and was able to travel around the entire campus almost five to six times, he said.

The new smart car has increased his productivity, Rawluk said. He is now able to travel around campus one or two times more than before, which increases the number of tickets he writes.

"I love my smart car," Rawluk said. "Not only does it help the productivity of my job, but it's air conditioned and has a radio."

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"People are really going to have to pay attention to where they park now," said Tyler Tillage, a senior who has received four parking tickets from Rawluk.

The new smart car is environmentally friendly as well, said Megan Zanella-Litke, the sustainability coordinator.

The smart car's gas tank holds eight gallons, therefore it only has to be filled up every Friday, Rawluk said.

"The selection of a smart car over a traditional sedan allows the parking office to perform its daily job while limiting environmental impacts from travel," Zanella-Litke said.

Rawluk said the electronic parking ticket system had been implemented because the handheld devices used in previous years would no longer be servicable by the suppliers.

Contact reporter Ryann Dannelly at

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