Ala Moana Center installs new parking technology ahead of the holidays

Local News

A traffic jam at the state’s largest shopping mall has some people asking if Ala Moana Center is ready for the busiest shopping day of the year.

A viewer sent us video showing long line of cars, inching their way out of the new Ewa wing over the weekend, so KHON2 wanted to know what is being done to help shoppers for the holidays?

“I just started going to Pearlridge instead of the Ala Moana because you know it was less hassle,” said Honolulu resident, Jane Uejo.

“We have maps on the elevators to show the best way to get out once you return to your car as well as what we are calling parking elves, some of our public safety team will be around directing people to the nearest exit,” said Ala Moana Center marketing manager, Robyn Gee Tucker.

There are 11,000 parking stalls at Ala Moana Center.

There is also a new parking feature that could make finding a stall easier.

“Each stall has been marked with a sensor,” said Tucker. “So when a car pulls in it takes it off the tally for what is available in that garage.”

So if you are driving up the parking ramp in the Ewa wing, keep an eye out for a small electronic sign with a number in it.

The sign will tell you how many stalls are open on that level.

“So that way you know that on this particular level you are pulling in there are 200 stalls open,” said Tucker. “So you are not wasting your time circling I think that is the most frustrating thing.”

Pearlridge Center is also expecting big crowds for the holidays.

This year they are opening on Thanksgiving Day for the first time ever.

“We expect good sales throughout the whole holiday and this will be new territory opening the mall at this hour,” said general manager of Pearlridge Center, Fred Paine.

But will the draw of Ala Moana Center’s new wing take away from other businesses?

Paine says that should not be the case for Pearlridge Center.

“We are still and always will be a local mall and we have our core shoppers that are very loyal to our center and we are grateful for that,” said Paine.

Ala Moana Center says it will be working with HPD to make traffic move faster as well.

Valet parking is also available for $5.

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