Spotlight on: Patrick Phillips + Buffalo, NY.
As an active member of BOMA Buffalo and the New York State Parking and Transportation Association, with over 24 years of experience, Pat brings passion and ingenuity to Premium Parking and the parking industry. Find out what brought him to the parking industry, his favorite neighborhoods, and places to go.
How did you get started in the Parking Industry and where has it taken you?
“A native of Buffalo, NY, I attended Buffalo State College and earned my Bachelor’s degree in 1999. That same year, I received the title of Project Manager for Interpark in Washington DC. After 2 years, my wife and I decided it was time to start a family of our own. So, we moved back to Buffalo, NY where we could raise our children closer to our family. In Buffalo, I was as an Operations Manager for Central Parking System. I was then promoted to General Manager of Syracuse. After 5 years in that role, I was approached by Allpro Parking, LLC with a General Manager position back in Buffalo. So, in 2008 my family and I moved back home..
Over the next two decades, my career in parking management evolved as I took on multiple roles of leadership ranging from General Manager to Vice President. When Premium Parking acquired Allpro Parking, last September, I became Market President of Buffalo, NY. I believe I can speak for myself and my colleagues when I say the Allpro team feels right at home. The Premium Parking leadership team are second to none and have been very welcoming and helpful during this transition. It feels great to be a part of a special culture with great alignment at all levels of the company.”
What are your favorite neighborhoods in Buffalo, NY and why?
“Buffalo’s Elmwood Village is an incredible area that is chock-full of classic Victorian style homes. Each are unique and most are remarkably preserved/restored. Although Buffalo’s exciting Central Business District is just a short walk away, the Elmwood Village is still quaint with a slower paced neighborhood feel. Elmwood Avenue itself is lined with amazing restaurants and boutique shopping. The north end of the Elmwood Village is near many of Buffalo’s cultural gems such as the Albright-Knox Art Gallery and the Buffalo History Museum. At the south end of the Elmwood Village lies the historic Allentown neighborhood. Fun fact: Mark Twain lived in Allentown from 1869-1871! Today, you might even see a Goo Goo Doll paying a visit to the streets of Allentown.”
What is your favorite season, and what activities do you like to do?
“My favorite season is the fall. As Labor Day passes, you are bound to experience a few weeks of near perfect days here in Western New York. The weather is often sunny and very comfortable with highs in the low-mid 60’s-70’s. As the breeze picks up off Lake Erie, you will experience what Buffalonians refer to as “sweater weather”. This weather means the start of the season for our beloved Buffalo Bills. You haven’t experienced a fall in Buffalo unless you’ve gone to a game at Highmark Stadium and taken part in our ritual tailgating. The smell of barbeque fills the air, and you can find the best chicken wings and beef on weck while waiting for kick off. GO BILLS!”
You have recently transitioned over to the GLIDEPARCS system. As someone who has been in the parking industry for over 20 years, working with gates, are you sold on going gateless?
“I have really enjoyed the transition to GLIDEPARCS and can say I have fully bought in to the gateless parking environment. In just a few months our compliance has increased drastically. It really goes to show that parkers will pay for their session when given clear and simple instructions. Multiple point of sale options and clear signage are the key ingredients that drive compliance. Our transition to Premium has provided us with both. Not to mention, the high-end analytics that the system features, produces all the information needed (and more) to effectively maximize our business. Being able to view competitor data on a map, set dynamic smart pricing, get real time occupancy analytics, and can control our locations from anywhere is truly wonderful and unique to Premium Parking.”
Where do you see the Parking Industry in 5 or 10 years?
“I believe that we are seeing the future with the evolution to gateless environments. This theory somewhat began with interstate travel when toll booth barriers were removed. The removal of friction points will continue to be the wave of the future in all forms of parking and transportation. So, I think gateless parking is here to stay. Reliance on contactless payments has also gained momentum following the COVID-19 pandemic and I believe this trend will continue far into the future. I really believe that the parking and transportation industry are on the cusp of another technological boom once driverless vehicles and guidance systems advance and become more mainstream. The developments will be exciting for sure.”