Parking permit pays for Uber train station rides in Summit, New Jersey

SUMMIT, New Jersey (WABC) -- There's a temporary solution to an ongoing problem at a New Jersey Transit station.

Some riders who park in Summit are leaving their cars at home, and getting an Uber ride to the station as part of a new program.

Jonathan, a Summit resident has two choices: drive and look for a space at the train station, or get an Uber ride to the train using the $80 per month parking permit he's already paid for.

"We are saving five million dollars by doing this, offering rides to parking permit holders rather than build a structure," said Nora Radest, Mayor of Summit.

Jonathan is a married father of two and is the first person to try this six-month program limited to 100 Summit residents like him.

"I got an email from a family and they are going to give away their car to their college kid and get by with just one because of this," said Mike McTernan, Summit Council President.

"And on snowy days you won't have to dig out your car and the driveway and get to station and find a spot," Mayor Radest said.

The focus is on convenience, and instead of spending millions on a parking garage they don't have room for people can get a ride and spaces get freed up.

More spaces means even more people can go there and spend money.

"I think it's a great idea," one resident said.

"Eliminate half the cars that come here and open up some spaces, clear congestion," another resident said.

"This is for the person whose car is just sitting parked in town by the station all day, it's chance to free that up," said Michael Rogers, Summit City Administrator.

Rogers put this creative Summit /Uber plan together. He is the one who reached out to Uber.

"Solving this problem was one of the highlights of this year," said Ana Mahony, Uber NJ General Manager.

"It's a model maybe for other towns like Morristown or Maplewood to put their own spin on it," said Richard Sun, a Summit councilmember.

This is the first in the state and nation. Summit parking permits are $80 a month, which pays for the Uber rides.

It is higher than neighboring towns, but this may work for them as well.
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