Chicago-based parking technology start-up Arrive, formerly known as ParkWhiz, is planning to deepen its involvement in Israel as it accelerates its research and development operations.The mobility start-up, which specializes in “friction-free parking” solutions, first established a permanent presence in Israel with the acquisition of Tel Aviv-based mobile payment platform CodiPark in May 2018. Arrive is now expected to inaugurate its first R&D center in Tel Aviv in the coming months, initially targeting the employment of up to one-dozen developers and expressing plans to grow significantly further. “Globally, Israel is known as a hub for innovation in mobility and technology, similar to how Silicon Valley is in the US,” said Tavor Ilan, vice president of business development at Arrive. Following the successful acquisition of CodiPark, Ilan says Arrive was eager to “recruit similar, like-minded people and create an R&D center in Israel.”Arrive has partnered with over 100 leading companies, municipalities and car manufacturers to implement its parking solutions to date. The start-up enables drivers to reserve, locate and access guaranteed parking space through its ParkWhiz and BestParking applications as well as developing voice control and in-dash navigation systems.Primarily targeting the fragmented North American parking market, the company’s major distribution partners include Amazon Alexa, Ticketmaster, Honda and TomTom. By purchasing parking through its applications, drivers can “seamlessly” enter and exit garages without making a reservation or taking a ticket at the gate. By the end of 2020, Arrive plans to install Bluetooth and other technologies in tens of thousands of garages and parking lots across the US and Canada. Regulatory demands mean thatStaff at the R&D center in Tel Aviv will be tasked with building and developing innovative parking solutions for Arrive’s brands and partners, ranging from on-demand parking methods to the Bluetooth technology connecting the parking gate to a driver’s vehicle or mobile device.“The team in Tel Aviv is helping parking lots and garages in North America offer drivers a more seamless experience from start to finish and prepare for connected – and eventually autonomous – vehicles,” said Ilan. “Additionally, they will help Arrive build relationships to like-minded mobility companies with offices in Tel Aviv.”While some might predict that mass parking solutions will be rendered irrelevant as autonomous vehicles take to the roads, Ilan begs to differ.“Parking isn’t dead, it’s just the beginning and there are so many opportunities out there,” he said. “We can’t deny that there might be a decrease in the number of cars but I believe companies like Via and Uber are the American Airlines and United Airlines of the future. They will own fleets and the parking lots will be the JFK and Newark of the world.”The autonomous cars rolling around our cities will need to park and charge themselves somewhere, and Ilan says depots outside the city simply won’t work when customers require on-demand travel.“We have a great mission and an interesting vision. Globally, there are so many things to do. If we solve the North American scene, we will need to solve the global scene,” Ilan said.