Dallas Natives Bring Parking Into the 21st Century Through ParkHub

parking

When George Baker was 12 years old, he began his career in the parking industry by sweeping lots for his family’s business, Parking Companies of America. Two decades later, the Highland Park High School graduate is sweeping traditional parking operations into the digital age with ParkHub. Headquartered in Dallas’ Design District, ParkHub simplifies the process of finding a parking spot through its cutting-edge online reservation system, and helps parking lot operators streamline efficiency and maximize profit through PRIME (Parking Revenue Inventory Management Enterprise), a mobile Point-of-Sales system the company released in September 2015.

“My aim was to take the pain out of parking, first for the person trying to find a spot, and now for the business owner or event center trying to run an efficient operation,” says Baker, ParkHub’s founder and CEO.

When ParkHub was founded in 2010, the company focused on individual drivers by easing parking through a process it refers to as “search, scan, park.”

“My aim was to take the pain out of parking, first for the person trying to find a spot, and now for the business owner or event center trying to run an efficient operation,” says Baker, ParkHub’s founder and CEO.

“You would be surprised with how antiquated and inefficient, effectively broken, this industry is, making it ripe for disruption. I mean, let’s be honest, parking sucks,” Baker says.

To reduce that factor, ParkHub’s customers use its interactive website to search through a national database of premiere parking spots that can be filtered by location and price. Customers then pre-purchase and reserve a desired space, and print a ticket for a parking operator to scan upon arrival. That means no more driving around looking for parking (or the lowest-priced parking) at an airport, stadium, or busy downtown location. ParkHub also provides directions and an ETA once a parking spot is purchased.

“ParkHub was one of the original online parking reservation systems out there,” says Dallas native Jarrod Fresquez, who serves as ParkHub’s chief marketing officer. “It wasn’t just a map of parking lots, it was an interactive website that you could search by price and proximity and pre-purchase so that you knew you would have a spot saved for you when you got there.”

To populate its online database, ParkHub has partnered with parking lot owners and managers, as well as sports and event venues to aggregate thousands of premiere parking lots across the country. The company has partnered with venues across Dallas Fort-Worth that include American Airlines Center, AT&T Stadium, and Gexa Energy Pavilion. Nationally, ParkHub is spread coast-to-coast, partnering with major sports venues that include Levi’s Stadium in San Francisco and Amalie Arena in Florida.

A Homegrown Approach
As Dallas natives, Baker and his founding team were keen on growing ParkHub here. “Dallas is our hometown, and we decided that we should nail it in our backyard before we scale it coast-to-coast,” Fresquez says. “It is home to a franchise from every major league (NFL, NBA, NHL, MLB), which makes it the perfect proving ground for our concept.”

Perhaps the most important seed DFW sowed for ParkHub’s founding team was that it allowed them to have witnessed firsthand the need for modernized parking at stadiums and event centers.

In addition, the team felt DFW harbored an environment that was encouraging for startups and small businesses in their early stages of development. “The tax structure here is extremely favorable for employees, and this creates a deep talent pool,” says Southern Methodist University alum Jake Edsell, who returned to Dallas last year to serve as ParkHub’s chief operating officer. “After spending two years in San Francisco dealing with high prices and observing the way people live, it was an easy choice for me to return to Dallas.”

Perhaps the most important seed DFW sowed for ParkHub’s founding team was that it allowed them to have witnessed firsthand the need for modernized parking at stadiums and event centers. A realization that came from DFW’s hosting a cornucopia’s worth of major events the past five years: a Super Bowl, the NBA Finals, a World Series, and the largest Country Music Awards in history, just to name a few.

“There was one major problem if you were lucky enough to get a ticket: parking is a pain, everyone knows that,” Fresquez says.

ParkHub sought to ease that pain by shifting focus from individual drivers, and taking a large-scale approach to improving efficiency of parking lot operators through the release of its first hardware product PRIME (Parking Revenue Inventory Management Enterprise).

PRIME: Revolutionizing the Parking Industry

Designed by Dialexa, a Dallas-based hardware and software development firm, PRIME is a mobile Point-of-Sales system that records cash transactions for parking operators. Importantly, PRIME also lets drivers pay with credit cards, and through a partnership with TicketMaster, ParkWhiz, and Blue Star Payment Solutions, PRIME is also able to validate QR/bar codes from pre-purchased parking reservations.

This is revolutionary for the parking industry, where a majority of operators still accept only cash transactions. It is also lucrative.

ParkHub reports that PRIME has parked more than 700,000 vehicles and produced more than $6 million in transactions. The company has also found that customers who pay for parking via credit card through PRIME spend as much as 10 percent more than those whose only option is to pay with cash. That has led to a 23-percent increase in sales for ParkHub’s clients who are using PRIME.

“As a company, we have changed our position and pivoted away from the consumer market and have become a technology company aimed at improving operations for event centers nationwide with our hardware and software,” Fresquez says.

This is revolutionary for the parking industry, where a majority of operators still accept only cash transactions. It is also lucrative.

In addition to opening methods of payment, PRIME is maximizing efficiency and boosting sales for venues and parking lot operators by tracking and reporting inventory, transactions, and traffic flow, in real-time via an LTE network to a cloud-based platform that operators can view from any smart device.

All of this technology is significant because it allows PRIME users to quickly make trend- and data-informed decisions. For example, lot operators and event venues can adjust the price of parking based on supply and demand at any given time.

“ParkHub has grown and changed from a consumer-facing product that services the public at large with simply creating parking reservations to an enterprise-level platform that integrates into the operations of major event centers,” Fresquez says.

PRIME can also monitor and manage parking lot personnel assignments to maximize efficiency. Meaning if a lot needs to be swept, Baker’s PRIME will let an operator know. “As a parking industry veteran of nearly 20 years, it has been rewarding trailblazing the parking technology and innovation frontier,” Baker says.


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Comments

  1. Glenn Menard says:

    When planning for parking around Super Bowl XLV in Arlington, TX., we found that Mr. Baker had a head start on pre-paid parking, and it greatly aided our efforts to coordinate all of the privately owned parking around AT &T Stadium. He has now taken it to the next level.