By Darla Shelden
City Sentinel Reporter
OKLAHOMA CITY– EMBARK, Oklahoma’s public transit agency, has announced the launch of the Flowbird mobile app, a more convenient way to find and pay for on-street parking in downtown Oklahoma City.
Earlier this year, the City of Oklahoma City and EMBARK announced the selection of Flowbird to provide a more efficient parking solution offering a fast, easy, and secure option to pay for on-street parking via a mobile device.
Since July 2012, EMBARK and Flowbird have partnered to bring “pay-by-plate” pay stations to downtown Oklahoma City. The Flowbird app will work with existing multi-space parking meters to create a consolidated payment platform.
To begin, users can find a parking spot, select their zone from the GPS-enabled map, choose a parking time duration, and then pay, all in one app, without having to use a parking meter.
In addition, notifications alert users when their parking session is about to expire and allows them to extend the time from their current location within the set time limit.
The app also features capabilities such as ‘Find My Car’ with directions back to the user’s parked car and bookmarks to save favorite parking spots. Future features will include parking reservations in EMBARK garages.
“With Flowbird’s app, we are integrating a more efficient and faster way to pay for parking into everyday activities for downtown parkers,” said Jason Ferbrache, EMBARK director.
“Our parking customers can now pay for their on-street parking from the comfort of their personal vehicle and proceed directly from their parking spot to their final destination without having to locate and pay a parking meter,” Jason added. “We can offer OKC visitors and residents a more convenient and mobile experience.”
There are currently 1,300 metered spaces in downtown Oklahoma City hosting more than 585,000 parking transactions – accounting for more than 38 million minutes of purchased parking.
According to findings from the 2019 Oklahoma City Downtown Parking Management study, parking in downtown Oklahoma City is generally accessible but recommends that introducing a mobile app, which will improve customer satisfaction and convenience.
The integration of the Flowbird app is a direct response to this area of opportunity to serve the customer better while modernizing the downtown parking experience, according to Jane Jenkins, president, and CEO of Downtown OKC Partnership
“Ease and convenience of parking are important to customers and businesses alike,” said Jenkins. “When visitors are able to park and pay seamlessly through a mobile app, our districts have increased capability to serve the needs of their guests in a more dynamic manner.”
Users can download the Flowbird app at parkingokc.com/app. Once downloaded, users can enter payment information and choose their location when parking.
The business division of the Central Oklahoma Transportation & Parking Authority (COTPA), EMBARK is a public trust administered by the City of Oklahoma City. EMBARK is responsible for providing safe, efficient, and convenient public transportation and downtown parking solutions to the greater Oklahoma City area.
For more information, visit parkingokc.com.