The National University of La Plata (UNLP) has sparked an economic phenomenon with its Metered Parking Solution (SEM), developed by the Higher Center for Information Processing (CeSPI). This platform has revolutionized the way cities manage parking, generating millions of dollars in revenue both in Argentina and in various locations in Latin America.
SEM, which allows drivers to park their vehicles in metered parking spaces for a fee, has gained wide acceptance in several cities. The municipality of La Plata, for example, pays around two million pesos a month to maintain this service in the city.
However, the true extent of the revenue generated by SEM becomes apparent when considering its expansion nationally and internationally. Numerous jurisdictions in the province of Buenos Aires, as well as cities in other Argentine provinces, have adopted this technological solution for parking management.
But SEM has also crossed borders and reached cities in Mexico, Colombia, Brazil, Bolivia, Chile and Paraguay, allowing it to generate revenue in various currencies. According to the official SEM website, they currently have 56 customer partners and manage an impressive total of 65,247 parking spaces.
The management of the funds generated through the agreements between CeSPI and the municipalities is the direct responsibility of the Rectorate of the UNLP. “The money for parking is collected by the contracting municipality, which deposits the payment for the service monthly into the official accounts of the UNLP,” explained a source close to the process. “When this money enters the university’s official accounts, it must be managed as public funds.”
Despite SEM’s success and significant revenue, UNLP has not provided detailed information on all revenue from this service.
CeSPI emphasizes that its role is limited to the design, development, maintenance, configuration and management of computer systems that provide services to the UNLP communities.
Mr. Francisco Javier Díaz, General Scientific and Technical Director of CeSPI and graduate of the Faculty of Exact Sciences of UNLP, is a key figure in the continued success of the SEM.
This technological solution, born at the University of La Plata, has become a successful business model that crosses borders and continues to generate significant revenues both for the educational institution and for the cities that implement it throughout Latin America.