Embryonic Canadian mobile payments market gets code of conduct

By Robin Arnfield

Joe Oliver, Canada’s Finance Minister, announced on April 13 that the Code of Conduct for the Credit and Debit Card Industry in Canada, a set of rules designed to protect merchants and cardholders, has been extended to mobile payments. The move will provide regulatory certainty for Canada’s nascent mobile payments market, particularly given the prospect of Apple Pay coming to Canada this year (http://www.mobilepaymentstoday.com/news/apple-pay-poised-to-debut-in-canada/).


“It’s very early days for mobile payments at the point-of-sale in Canada, but the stakeholders such as the banks and telcos are establishing their positions,” says Christie Christelis, president of Canadian consultancy Technology Strategies International. “There’s very little mobile payments adoption in Canada, as NFC-enabled smartphones aren’t available in sufficient quantities yet. Also, consumers lack awareness about NFC payments at the point-of-sale and need to learn how to load their card credentials onto smartphones.”

However, Christelis says Canadian consumers are enthusiastic about using smartphones for purchases. “They’re already doing a lot of remote mobile payments,” he says. “Also, over the last year or two, I’ve been seeing a lot more contactless credit card payments in stores. Many Canadian POS terminals are already NFC-enabled on the back of the country’s EMV migration.”

A bottleneck to Canadian contactless card and mobile payments adoption is the fact that, while many Canadian credit cards contain contactless chips, there are still few contactless debit cards in issue. This is a problem, as Canada is a large debit card market, Christelis says.

Interac, the Canadian domestic debit scheme, only lists 13 FIs, including CIBC, RBC Royal Bank of Canada, Scotiabank and TD, as supporting its Interac Flash contactless application (http://interac.ca/en/interac-flash/flash-filist). In March 2013, RBC carried out the first Canadian mobile payment involving Interac Flash (http://www.mobilepaymentstoday.com/news/interac-and-partners-demo-canadas-first-contactless-mobile-debit-scheme/).

Code of Conduct

The Code was introduced in 2010 to promote merchant choice, fee transparency and disclosure, and fairness…

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A Different Look At Single Space Sensors

By Bill Smith
PHOTO CAPTION: Image shows car above a sensor within the stall and with the signage and meter. This is in front of the Centre for Brain Health (attached to and part of the Hospital)  

Single space sensors are one of the most exciting parking technologies to be introduced in recent years. They have quickly gained acceptance throughout the industry because of the many benefits they offer both parkers and parking owners. The most obvious advantage can be found in their parking guidance function. By clearly and accurately indicating where open parking can be found, the sensor technology makes parking more convenient than ever before by eliminating the need for parkers to circle structures and lots looking for an open space. At the same time, the sensors collect data about who is parking in each space and for how long. This is invaluable information for helping owners and operators run their facilities as efficiently as possible.

The University of British Columbia (UBC) in Vancouver has found a new, non-traditional use for this technology. The University recently installed sensors in two areas on campus that have historically had trouble with drivers overstaying permitted parking durations. The areas are intended as drop-off points, but drivers tended to park for extended periods of time, which caused traffic congestion on nearby roadways. The sensors were installed to clearly indicate how long parking was permitted in each space, and encourage compliance with time limits.

UBC’s sensor program utilizes solar-powered Frogparking sensors, which are installed in the ground in each individual space and connected to the university’s parking management grid to provide real-time enforcement and utilization data. Nine sensors were installed at the UBC Hospital Complex and eleven were installed at the recreation center and aquatic centre.

“We began this program last August, and we are already seeing an…

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Green Initiatives: Solar Power Generating Parking Garages

By David Watts

If you drive past the Parking garage at the Ajax GO station, or the Erindale GO station, there is nothing visible that sets them apart from the other dozen or so parking facilities Metrolinx has constructed over the past 2 years.

You must get to the top floor to see the difference – approximately 1,200 solar modules on each of the those roofs, and a purpose built inverter room, designed specifically for the unit that converts  the direct current generated by solar modules to the alternating current that powers our houses.

Each garage will generate approximately 342,000 kWH per year, which is the equivalent consumption of 32 or 33 average Ontario homes.

It can also be looked at as offsetting the consumption of the parking facility.

Consumption projections at Erindale showed projected electrical consumption of about 1,000,000 kWH per year. The solar on the roof covers about a third of the annual needs, but if you break it down by season, it covers the summer consumption almost entirely. Winter is another story- the days are shorter and cloudier, and the nights long.

Long term analysis will show us if actual consumption reaches the projected levels, as all the lighting is LED, and lights are on timers and photo-sensors.

How do you plan a solar garage?

It is actually quite simple.

The racking system which connects the solar modules to the building is an engineered, ballasted system.  Wind tunnel testing shows us just where we need to place the weight to ensure that the entire array stays put, no matter what nature throws at us.

Typically the universal load for this ranges from 3 PSF to 6 PSF. If the parking facility in the design stage has a top floor that has a minimum extra 7 PSF allowance designed into it, I would call that solar ready….

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Who Are You Completing This Street For?

By Darnel Harris

On January 30, 2013 Richard Florida, the creative class guru published a piece on his CityLab blog entitled, ‘More Losers than Winners in America’s New Economic Geography.’ Effectively distancing himself from the way the theory he popularized for a decade has been implemented, Florida wrote that, “on close inspection, talent clustering provides little in the way of trickle-down benefits. Its benefits flow disproportionately to more highly-skilled knowledge, professional and creative workers whose higher wages and salaries are more than sufficient to cover more expensive housing in these locations. While less-skilled service and blue-collar workers also earn more money in knowledge-based metros, those gains disappear once their higher housing costs are taken into account.” In effect, the ‘creative class’ attracting investments municipalities made were now exacerbating urban inequality, and, were not just, “a vicious cycle but an unsustainable one — economically, politically, and morally.” While Florida has expressed his regret, families continue to swell the ranks of that vicious cycle in North America’s major cities.


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2nd Quarter

Featured in this issue:

  • Embryonic Canadian Mobile Payments Market gets Code of Conduct
  • Canadian Parking Association Member Profiles
  • Green Initiatives: Solar Power Generating Parking Garages
  • Who Are You Completing This Street For?
  • A Different Look At Single Space Sensors

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