The Notre Dame Cathedral is a perfect example of how technology can be utilized to make parking simple; a combination of being located in a high traffic area, close to the University of Ottawa, and offering visitors complimentary parking makes the Notre-Dame Cathedral a great location to spotlight for the Park Smarter, Not Harder campaign.
Designated a National Historic Site of Canada in 1990, the Notre Dame Cathedral is the largest and oldest standing church in Ottawa. While offering daily masses, the Notre Dame Cathedral is also open to private prayer, visitations, and events such as funerals, weddings, or other liturgical celebrations.
When REEF Ottawa took over the parking operations of Notre Dame Cathedral in 2020, they saw an opportunity to simplify the parking experience for visitors. The goal was simple: implement technology solutions that make parking easy, enforcement seamless, and provide a great experience for everyone involved.
To achieve the goal of putting the parker first and creating a seamless solution, REEF Ottawa implemented Offstreet at the Notre Dame Cathedral. Knowing all the different groups of people that park at the Notre Dame Cathedral, REEF utilized Offstreet’s portal to validate visitors and volunteers through two kiosks in highly accessible areas; Notre Dame’s Parish Hall and the Archbishops Residence, to offer complimentary 3 hour and 24 hour parking.
Creating accessibility for all visitors and demographics was a major consideration for this project. Kiosks are easy-to-use tablets that allow visitors to register for complimentary parking, without requiring a phone to scan a QR code or enter in a link. This takes the onus off of the Notre Dame Cathedral, as there is no need to hire staff or request volunteers to manage parking.
Brian Manning, Account Manager with REEF Ottawa, had this to say about the experience with Offstreet: "Notre Dame Cathedral provided the first opportunity for Impark to introduce this new validation technology in the Ottawa Market. The system has proven to be both easy to introduce to the property, and easy to use for our clients and customers.
The flexibility of the Offstreet Solution has made this our go to validation recommendation to our existing and prospective client group."
As a result, the Notre Dame Cathedral can be visited and enjoyed by all. Utilizing Offstreet’s validation software, the Notre Dame Cathedral does not need to worry about their visitors or guests receiving tickets, and REEF Ottawa is able to simply manage and enforce parking with data being sent to enforcement in real time.