WPS Parking Solutions has been acquired by CERTINA GROUP to further drive innovation and growth in parking management

From left to right: Hendrik Pot, CFO at WPS, Giovanni Santamaria, Managing Partner at Certina, Erik Stronk, CEO at WPS

WPS Parking Solutions, specialists in innovative cloud-based parking management solutions has been acquired by Munich-based family-run industrial holding company CERTINA GROUP. With over 25 years of experience in building and reshaping companies, CERTINA will further invest in WPS, its solutions, customers and employees to drive innovation and growth within the parking industry.

The sale of WPS Parking Solutions to CERTINA will result in the separation of the current WPS organization. WPS North, including WPS Belgium, WPS Parking Systems (NL), WPS Canada, WPS UK, WPS US, and WPS Holding, will now be part of CERTINA’s portfolio of companies. WPS North will continue to operate as an individual company under CERTINA.

WPS Brazil, as an independent company within the WPS family, will not be sold. The current shareholders, local management and Egeria, will continue WPS operations in Brazil and South America in its current form.

WPS and CERTINA are committed to ensuring continuity and growth in the parking management solutions industry. The acquisition is an exciting opportunity for WPS to enter the next phase of its development with a new owner who has extensive experience in building and reshaping companies.

Erik Stronk, CEO at WPS Parking Solutions: ‘’We look forward to a bright future that we will realize together with CERTINA. With their investments made according to the principles of sustainability, continuity and corporate responsibility, we find the ideal partner in CERTINA to help us navigate changing market conditions and further invest in our products, employees, and growth. I am confident that this acquisition will accelerate innovation and success for our business and customers.”

Giovanni Santamaria, Managing Partner at CERTINA: “We are excited to welcome WPS Parking Solutions to the CERTINA family of companies. With our extensive…

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Genetec and Ride Amigos Simplify the Return to Offices with New Corporate Mobility Solution

Collaborative solution improves commuting, parking experiences

MONTRÉAL, August 3, 2022— Genetec Inc. (“Genetec”), a leading technology provider of unified security, public safety, operations, and business intelligence solutions, has teamed with commute management solutions provider RideAmigos to help organizations deliver a simplified and enhanced experience to commuters returning to offices post pandemic. The solution pairs RideAmigos Commute Hub with Genetec AutoVuTM Free-Flow and Genetec Curb SenseTM .

RideAmigos Commute Hub helps employers deliver a seamless experience no matter how their employees choose to get to the office. It enables commuters to identify their best transportation options and reserve a guaranteed parking space based on their needs, such as accessible parking, eliminating the need to circle lots in search of a space, and alleviating some of the stress of getting to work.

Space availability is guaranteed via automatic license plate recognition (ALPR) cameras. The pairing of RideAmigos’ Commute Hub with Genetec AutoVu Free-Flow and Genetec Curb Sense  gives parking officials full insight into parking demand and facility status, so they can ensure parking conditions are optimal. The solution also enables employees to choose from many transportation options such as mass transit, shuttles, carpooling, and active choices like biking to work, so they select the commute that is the most beneficial and enjoyable on any given day.

“Leaders at large organizations realize that commuting options are a critical part of the overall employee experience, particularly as people transition back to offices after being fully remote,” said Genetec Product Line Manager, AutoVu, Michael Bradner. “Streamlining the commuter experience can help boost employee satisfaction and productivity. Our goal with this joint solution is to help organizations optimize accessibility and use of parking spaces and provide or subsidize alternative transportation services to reduce the burden on employees.”

“Employers are more conscious than ever…

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Millennials & The Future of Municipal Parking

Over the last decade, an overwhelming amount of literature has been produced in the public transportation field regarding Millennials and the future of personal vehicle ownership, and therefore the future of Municipal Parking lots. Most of the research indicates that Millennials are generally less car-focused than previous generations, and their transportation behaviours continue to change in ways that ultimately reduce personal vehicle driving. There are plenty of reasons that have contributed to this ‘shift’ in behaviour, including: dependence on technology, socioeconomic contributors (delayed marriage, the Recession), and lifestyle preferences (Millennials tend to prefer walkable communities). Recent studies and dialogues surrounding Smart Cities suggest City Planners are beginning to ‘rethink parking…by getting rid of it.’ At the centre of the dialogue surrounding the future of parking in cities is an assumption that Millennials apprehensiveness to drive and own private vehicles. This will predict future travel behaviours by them, and generations to come. 

Re-thinking parking by getting rid of it is not only short-sighted but does not fully take into consideration the travel patterns of Millennials. While some Millennials have certainly chosen to fore-go vehicle ownership, particularly in dense urban centres like downtown Toronto, Millennials surrounding the GTA in less dense cities, for example Mississauga, are still choosing to use a personal vehicle to move around.

While the technology surrounding self-driving cars is in place, and continues to evolve, the governing regulations surrounding self-driving cars are still in their infancy. Self-driving cars may eventually reduce parking demand considerably and will certainly change the way users pay for parking. It is reasonable that there be an emphasis on ensuring all future parking garages must be built in a manner that would allow for ‘future-proofing’ for self-driving cars, or to accommodate other uses if there…

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Mobility Begins at the Curb

By Roamy Valera

The hottest buzz word among parking leaders right now is mobility. In fact, within and outside the industry, mobility is a primary concern for those who are tasked with shaping our communities. Accountability is being placed on those who impact our ability to move about freely, easily and safely in our urban environment. How we move however, is determined by urban planning for the future. And today, as we are on the cusp of the age of the smart city and self-driving vehicles, the future of mobility is taking shape.

Mobility is about providing efficient access to essential services, employment opportunities, and entertainment and recreational opportunities. For some, that means facilitating car travel; for some it means providing transit resources, as well as first and last mile service for transit users; and for some it means providing safe and convenient pedestrian access. The benefits of providing seamless mobility are enormous: more vibrant economic development, more sustainable communities, and a better quality of life for residents and visitors.

Parking is a critical element in the mobility piece and can make or break our ability to move around our environment efficiently. An estimated 30 percent of traffic in urban areas is caused by drivers looking for parking. How we leverage innovative technology to reduce this friction is key to solving this element and will allow those accountable to our journey to better manage the curb.

Curb Management is the Key

How we manage the curb matters.  When vehicles are constantly circling blocks looking for parking, they cause congestion on roadways and pose a hazardous situation for fellow drivers and pedestrians alike. Likewise, when drivers double park, they create similar hazards. So, where do we start?

Curb management begins with Transportation Demand Management (TDM). TDM is a general term describing strategies designed to increase overall…

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How LPR Technology Transformed The Car Share Experience

By Nigel Bullers

Car share is transforming how people think about their daily commuting needs and that is seen on the west coast more than any of the other market; Seattle, Portland and here in Canada, Vancouver is at the epicenter of the adoption of car share. Car share has evolved over the past decade, early adopters were people that cashed in their personal cars and headfirst into car share as the only option alongside public transit. Today the users are different, many of them have multiple vehicles at home and they hold multiple car share accounts. Car share has become part of a total transportation solution for drivers. Although these new users are slightly different than the early adopters, the needs remain the same – the desire for easy parking close to destinations and pick up points, and frictionless, quick parking solutions.

Parking at the destination

In downtown urban centers some of the parking facilities will be gated, as is true in Vancouver where Pacific Centre has some 1500 spaces exactly where car share users would like to go. But in the past, car share had challenges with gated lots and lots underground where they lost the signal and would lose cars and thus inventory.

Evo Car Share and EasyPark partnered to bring car share to Pacific Centre. The process entailed enhancements to the repeaters so that vehicles would not go dark when going underground, and by devising a solution for billing for the cars going in and out of the lot. The early program worked in a very basic way, whereby drivers would simply pull a ticket, leave that ticket on the dash and then the next driver would hand that ticket to the booth attendant, who would process the ticket. Evo was billed at…

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2018 Emerging Trends In Parking

By Chris Hylton

Earlier this year we sent out a survey to members of the Canadian Parking Association.  The survey asked a variety of questions about issues to identify the emerging trends and help the industry respond.

Regarding data, we asked about how organizations were using data, real-time and projected, to drive parking policy and design.  We also asked about the relationship between data and funding expansion projects.

Regarding technology, we asked about how organizations were implementing new technology and the success rate.  This included things like parking and payment apps as well as charging stations.

Regarding customer experience, we asked about how technology and online relationships via social media channels have helped to improve the overall customer experience.

Data Use Trends

93% of respondents reported that they were seeing an increased use of data to drive their service and design.  Just a few of the data points that organizations are tracking include: number of vehicles, fees, payment methods, type of vehicle (i.e.: gas, hybrid, electric), turnover, event usage, parking via permit, versus daily, or hourly paid.

Digital Technology Continues to Drive the Industry

Common technological trends mentioned by survey participants included the emergence and adoption of parking apps, mobile payment options, and the provision of charging stations for electric vehicles.

Over time parking apps have simply exploded. A few years ago, Calgary’s ParkPlus system which permitted payment by phone, was revolutionary.  Now apps cover every conceivable aspect of our industry.  From the customer perspective there are apps involved in guidance, payment, all in one, and even handsfree no touch apps.

As automakers rush to meet customer demands to turn vehicles into four wheeled smart phones, parking apps are hitting vehicle screens with increasingly sophisticated parking support.

Ford Motor Co. has developed FordPass, a vehicle system that can, among others, find and pay for…

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Parking Infrastructures and Green Mobility

By Danielle Desjardins

One of the greatest environmental challenges our cities face today lies in mobility. The economic and social fabric of urban environments are closely intertwined with networks of vehicles and transportation systems that leave their mark: around one-quarter of global CO2 emissions come from the transportation of people and goods.

How should the parking industry adapt to a future in which major cities may deploy various strategies meant to diminish the number of private vehicles on their main thoroughfares, thus diminishing the need for parking spaces?

If you commuted to work by car in Montreal or Toronto in 2017, chances are you spent the equivalent of a normal work week being stuck in traffic. According to the Inrix Traffic Scorecard Rank1, commuters from these cities wasted respectively 50 and 47 hours being in a car immobilized by congestion.

As the population grows and more people move into urban areas, overwhelmingly choosing the suburbs over downtowns, traffic jams worsen and commuting to work becomes a never-ending nightmare. Hence a growing trend in major cities to implement various strategies and impose new rules to ease the gridlock and get people moving again. 

For instance, many cities are banning cars from their centers: Oslo has pledged to do it by 2019, Madrid wants to do it in 2020, while cities like Rome, Dusseldorf and Stuttgart are planning to ban diesel cars in the near future.2 Other cities, like London, plan to create streets and street networks that encourage walking, cycling and public transport use in order to reduce car dependency3. Add this to other recent developments, like the proliferation of ride-sharing and car-sharing services and the advent of driverless cars getting people to work and returning home to park4, and you have the perfect storm for a decline in demand for parking garage services.


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