Kirkwood Parking App To Showcase Fybr's Work In Its Own Backyard
A Chesterfield-based tech company, Fybr, has installed 275 wireless parking sensors in downtown Kirkwood. Starting this week, residents and visitors will be able to access real-time parking availability via the mobile app, Park Kirkwood.
“It lets citizens and drivers find real-time parking availability,” said Fybr’s chief commercial officer, Matt Willenbrink. “When a driver pulls in, within a couple seconds, the app will tell them that that space is occupied. And when a driver leaves those spaces, it lets them know that that space is available to park in.”
In addition to helping drivers find spots more easily, Willenbrink said the technology also benefits local businesses.
“A lot of drivers will actually choose not to visit stores or do their typical errands because of parking problems,” he said. “So if we can help mitigate that problem and help them find parking easier, not only does it save them time ... but local businesses actually see an increase and an uptick in revenue.”
Fybr has employed its technology in larger cities, including San Francisco, Los Angeles, Seattle and Washington, D.C. Kirkwood will mark Fybr’s first deployment in the St. Louis region.
“This installation is the beginning of what we would consider a smart city-type approach, particularly in our downtown area,” said Russell Hawes, chief administrative officer for the city of Kirkwood.
Hawes joined Monday’s St. Louis on the Air to discuss his hopes for Park Kirkwood. He said the project is part of a larger development plan for the city.
“We installed other aspects of [smart city technology] earlier with the Kirkwood road traffic signal project, where we have actuated traffic signals and computer controls between those signals. As people go down Lindbergh and into Kirkwood and exit south into Sunset Hills, all the traffic signals are coordinated and connected,” he said. “We're also working on Wi-Fi installations in our downtown that go along with this installation as well.”
During the discussion, he shared how the city will utilize the parking occupancy data that will be provided by Fybr.
“St. Louis on the Air” brings you the stories of St. Louis and the people who live, work and create in our region. The show is hosted by Sarah Fenske and produced by Alex Heuer, Emily Woodbury, Evie Hemphill and Lara Hamdan. The audio engineer is Aaron Doerr.