Now available for free download: ParkRTC, an app you are going to need in a few weeks.
Reston Town Center is planning to begin paid parking in its seven garages on Aug. 1. It is encouraging town center visitors to get the free app from Apple or Google Play.
The app, which RTC owners Boston Properties calls a “significant enhancement” for customers, will store your credit card info and will be able to automatically pay for parking, which will cost $2 an hour on weekdays, say Reston Town Center representatives. Weekends, holidays and special events will remain free.
According to Reston Town Center’s FAQs on the subject:
“Reston Town Center has invested in this state of the art, virtual system which will allow you to quickly arrive at your destination and return to your car simply by entering a few digits on your mobile device. The ticketless parking system is based on license plate recognition, making it easier for you to enter and exit Reston Town Center.
A parking guidance system which uses red and green LED-based space indicators and electronic display boards will also guide you to available parking spaces.”
RTC says there will be additional ways to pay, including online at ParkRTC.com, using your phone to call and at pay stations in the town center.
Many stores will have validation. Look for a comprehensive list of stores soon. RTC says the validation system “also leverages the same technology the rest of the Park RTC system does and therefore also does not utilize tickets of any kind.”
What happens if you don’t pay? RTC says they will not be towing, but you will get a “notice that will be placed on your vehicle. If you choose not to register, your vehicle will be recorded by the system and subject to future additional enforcement.”
Boston Properties, which owns Reston Town Center, announced in March it was going to a paid parking system in order to cut down on the number of people using the town center garages as commuter parking for the Silver Line.
That news was met with concern from patrons, employees and some store owners. Boston Properties was originally going to charge retail workers for parking, but has since offered them free parking. Some office employees will be offered parking fees paid by their employer as a benefit.
There have been several petitions protesting the move, and many residents say they will no longer visit town center during the week if they must pay.