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Massapequa Park parking program canceled

Massapequa Park Mayor James Altadonna Jr. stands near

Massapequa Park Mayor James Altadonna Jr. stands near the former site of now-shuttered Brunswick Hospital Center in Amityville. (Dec. 23, 2011) Credit: Ed Betz

Massapequa Park Village has canceled a program allowing it to electronically monitor no-parking zones after a three-month trial showed violations weren’t egregious enough to warrant continued use of the pavement sensors.

The board of trustees, in a unanimous 7-0 vote Monday night, ended its agreement with Georgia-based StreetSmart Technology Llc, which embedded 35 wireless discs near the Park Boulevard business center in a no-cost test program that started in November.

Drivers were more likely to leave their vehicles for 30 seconds to 4 minutes than park them for long durations, officials learned from the test.

The puck-shaped devices were placed in no-parking zones to sense vehicles and alert officers via their smartphones. Often, by the time officers arrived, the vehicle was already gone, officials said.

“With the short duration of [illegal parking] time, we’d end up having more confrontations between code enforcement officers and residents and shoppers,” Mayor James Altadonna Jr., above, said. “There aren’t going to be any electronic devices, but we’re still going to enforce these rules.”

The sensors, which StreetSmart officials Tuesday said would be removed from Massapequa Park roads, would have cost the village $25 per disc per month.

Massapequa Park is the first municipality to use the sensors to improve public safety rather than for the purposes of helping drivers locate vacated parking spaces, StreetSmart managing partner Kirby Andrews said.

An increased number of sensors might have improved results, he said.

“It would have had real merit if we were operating at scale,” Andrews said.

Photo: Massapequa Park Mayor Jim Altadonna.

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