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4 Ways to Welcome Cyclists

J.C. Porter

Bicycling is receiving a lot of attention in the parking world, and for good reason: it’s healthy, it’s environmentally-friendly, and it helps alleviate car congestion. There are four easy ways to create an inviting bike environment for businesses, cities, and universities:

  1. A little paint goes a long way to help increase the visibility of cyclists and your efforts to promote bicycling. Sharrows, a street marking to indicate a shared-lane (from a combination of the words share and arrow), are easy to paint and save space over traditional bike lanes, as they are meant to be used by both bikes and automobiles.
  2. There are several different types of bike racks that can work for different types of spaces. An inverted U is the most common type of bike rack; this works best for cyclists and is also attractive. Space savers can be used in areas such as underneath stair wells or unused portions under garage ramps. And finally, cycle stalls are multi-space bike racks that are placed on the street. These allow for better access on the sidewalks and, if placed strategically such as near crosswalks, can create better sight lines for both pedestrians and motorists.
  3. A fix-it station is an easy addition to any location. This provides a place for riders to use an attached pump or other tools to keep their bike running.
  4. Joining forces with bicycle-related organizations is a great way to receive recognition for additions and improvements you take on. These organizations will help promote your business, city, state, university, or hospital’s efforts to encourage cycling. Small investments in time and money will go a long way in helping to promote your organization.

Have you encouraged your customers to commute by bike? Let us know in the comments.

More Than Just a Job Board

Henry Wallmeyer

Whether you always dreamed of working in parking (hey, it happens!) or backed into your career, getting ahead is a common goal. IPI’s Career HQ  is an excellent place for parking professionals to post their resumes and search for parking jobs, all at no charge. And it just got a whole lot better. Starting this week, we’ve expanded the IPI Career HQ with career advice, professional resume writing services, and access to a career coach.

This new, more robust resource for job hunters–and recruiters–now offers:

  • Career tips.
  • Professional resume writing.
  • Career coaching.
  • Social networking/profile development.
  • Reference checking/employment verification.

You’ll find some intriguing information just by browsing through the Career Tips sections. Advice on writing a cover letter compares “aggressive vs. non-aggressive verbiage” and a section on “negotiating your offer, closing the deal” has some surprising ideas. I guarantee if you start reading, you won’t stop and you’ll learn a great deal you can put to immediate use.

While personalized resume coaching carries competitive-priced options, a great deal of the advice in these new sections is free.

To see and take advantage of these new career resources, visit and let us know what you think!

Training for the Unexpected

Cindy Campbell

A recent sunny, southern California Friday afternoon that should have been a typical last day of the winter academic term turned out to be anything but at Cal Poly State University. A passerby discovered the body of a young man (later identified as a first-year student) in a vehicle parked in a busy campus parking lot. The tragedy was an apparent suicide by over-exposure to hydrogen sulfide gas. The young man had taken steps intended to keep others safe, posting signs on the inside of his vehicle windows that warned of the chemical. Along with police officers, members of our parking staff were on scene to keep pedestrians and vehicles a safe distance from the work of the hazardous materials team. It was a challenging task, as students were trying to pack their cars and leave campus for spring break.

When something like this happens, we naturally reflect on thoughts of our own families and hope to never experience such personal tragedy. We feel sadness and sympathy for both the victim and their family. On this occasion, another thought occurred to me, and it’s the purpose of this post: what if one of our parking employees initially came upon the situation? Would they have understood the potential dangers involved? Would they have reacted instinctively and opened the car door in an attempt to help the young man? We provide training on a wide variety of topics to our parking staff, but understanding and recognizing hazardous chemicals isn’t one of the topics we’ve covered in the past decade. Is it a standard training topic for your program?

Eight Questions About Security

Bob Harkins

When safety and security of a parking lot or facility was mentioned before September 11, 2001, many rolled their eyes and yawned.  Since that unforgettable day, the concept and actions in parking security have taken on a new dimension. We all have a dog in the hunt.  So where do we begin?  Let’s start at the extreme and work back to the day-to-day.

  1. Terrorism: The greatest threat to our lots and facilities is an act of terrorism from a vehicle bomb. Parking facilities are often very attractive to people who wish to do us harm. Our facilities and lots are in key locations to do damage. What can we do?  IPI has partnered with the First Observer Program to train parking professionals on what to look for and what to do. In short, if it doesn’t look right report it! Our employees need to be the eyes and ears for bad people trying to do bad things. If you want training for your staff, click here. It’s free. More than 8,000 parking professionals are now First Observers. Are you?
  2. Basic Safety: We all need to walk our lots and facilities in daylight and at night.  How do you feel? Certainly lighting is a critical factor. Better ideas?
  3. Cameras: Most believe that if you have cameras, there is an expectation that they are monitored. If they are not, there should be signs to indicate that the cameras are for management purposes.
  4. Elevators and Stairways: The use of glass and openness has helped significantly with the feeling of security. Closed-in spaces can create fear and concern.  What are best ideas and practices?
  5. Entrances: Restrict pedestrian flow into a facility to specific pathways that can be observed or filmed. Watch shrubbery and bushes that can hide attackers. Some facilities have wire mesh screens to prevent access in areas other than designated entrances.
  6. Lighting: What is the proper or best lighting level for parking lots and facilities?  What are the most cost-efficient types of lights?
  7. Panic or “Blue Light” Buttons: Are they useful?  Buttons with two-way communications or just call technology? With the prevalence of cell phones, some facilities are re-thinking the need. What is your stance?
  8. Bus Stops: How do we protect and secure bus stops and reduce waiting time? Will mobile technology and GIS capability on transit vehicles provide real-time information about arrivals and delays?

What other questions should we be asking and what answers can you share?

Meet our Bloggers. Become a Blogger.

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Interested in writing for the Parking Matters® Blog? We are eager to add more names to our list of contributing bloggers and we’re interested in many different perspectives to enrich the conversation.

To learn more about adding your voice to IPI’s newest parking and transportation forum, contact Kim Fernandez at

Bruce Barclay, CAPP

Bruce Barclay

Bruce Barclay, CAPP, is operations manager, parking & shuttle services, with the Salt Lake City Department of Airports. He is co-chair of IPI’s Safety and Security Committee and a member of IPI’s Membership Committee.

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Wanda Brown

Wanda Brown

Wanda Brown is assistant manager for Parking & Transportation Services at the University of California Davis Health System. She is a member of the IPI Board of Directors and the IPI Advisory Council, and co-chairs the IPI Membership Committee.

View Posts by Wanda Brown

L. Dennis Burns, CAPP

L. Dennis Burns

L. Dennis Burns, CAPP, is senior practice builder and regional vice president with Kimley-Horn and Associates, Inc. He is a columnist and frequent contributor to The Parking Professional magazine. He serves on the IPI Advisory Council, the Professional Development Task Force, and the Parking Program/Accreditation Task Force.

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Cindy Campbell

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Cindy Campbell is Senior Training and Development Specialist for the International Parking Institute.

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Shawn Conrad, CAE

Shawn Conrad

Shawn Conrad, CAE, is executive director of the International Parking Institute.

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Kathleen Federici, M.Ed.


Kathleen Federici, M.Ed., is director of professional development of the International Parking Institute.

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Dave Feehan

Dave Feehan

Dave Feehan is president and CEO of Civitas Consultants LLC and former president of the International Downtown Association. He is a member of IPI’s Accreditation Committee and a frequent contributor to various professional journals. He is working on a new book, Design Downtown for Women – Men will Follow.

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Kim Fernandez


Kim Fernandez is editor of The Parking Professional magazine.

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Frank L. Giles

Frank L. Giles

Frank L. Giles is parking director at the Georgia International Convention Center and serves on the IPI Advisory Council, Conference Program Committee, and Safety/Security Committee.

View Posts by Frank L. Giles

David Hill, MA, CAPP

David Hill

David Hill, MA, CAPP, is CEO of Clayton-Hill Associates, Ltd.

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Doug Holmes, CAPP

Doug Holmes

Doug Holmes, CAPP, is interim director, Transportation, Penn State – Retired. He serves on the IPI Advisory Council, is Co-Chair of the Professional Certification/CAPP Committee, and a member of the Professional Development Task Force.

View Posts by Doug Holmes

Casey Jones, CAPP

Casey Jones 4x5 (2)

Casey Jones, CAPP is vice president for university services at SP Plus Corporation.  He is IPI past chair and services on the IPI Parking Matters Committee and Accredited Parking Organization board of directors.

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Michelle W. Jones, CMP


Michelle W. Jones, CMP, is director of convention and meeting services for the International Parking Institute.

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Christina Onesirosan Martinez, MBA MCIM

Christina Onesirosan Martinez

Christina Onesirosan Martinez, MBA MCIM, is marketing director at Parkopedia, where she is responsible for the company’s global marketing operations. She serves on IPI’s International Outreach Committee.

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Isaiah Mouw, CAPP

Isaiah Mouw

Isaiah Mouw, CAPP, LEED Green Associate, is a vice president for Municipal Citation Solutions, at Republic Parking Systems. He serves on the IPI Advisory Council, Sustainability Committee, and Parking Matters® Committee.

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Mark Napier, CAPP

Mark D Napier

Mark Napier, CAPP, is associate director, operations, Parking & Transportation Services at the University of Arizona, and a member of IPI’s Education Development and Safety & Security committees.

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Jeff Petry

Jeff Petry

Jeff Petry manages the City of Eugene’s on-street and off-street parking system. He serves on the IPI Advisory Council and the Sustainability Committee.

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Bill Smith


Bill Smith, principal at Smith Phillips Strategic Communications, is a public relations and marketing strategy professional specializing in parking.  He writes a column for The Parking Professional.

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Helen Sullivan


Helen Sullivan is IPI’s communications counsel.

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Patrick Troy

Patrick headshot 2012 cropped

Patrick Troy is chief executive of the British Parking Association.

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