The North Texas Commission is offering to install AFV-preferred parking signs for free. The signs are available on a first come, first served basis.

April 7, 2014 

By Minnie Payne

The North Texas Commission wants to make it easy for businesses or organizations to reward employees or customers who drive hybrids or electric cars. 

One way to do that is to give the alternative-fuel vehicle drivers the best parking places. So over the coming weeks, NTC will be installing free signage designating AFV-preferred parking spaces on a first-come, first-served basis.

Robert Kent, director of public policy at the North Texas Commission, a consortium of public and private entities that partners to deal with regional issues, explains that in North Texas we have a big problem with ozone pollution and that half of it comes from vehicles on the road, namely petroleum-fueled cars and trucks.

Alternative-fuel vehicles, which includes biodiesal, propane and natural gas transportation along with hybrids and EVs, aim to reduce that pollution. 

“Since AFVs are 20 percent to 80 percent cleaner, you reduce ozone emissions. And by providing free signage, we are hopeful that Dallas area businesses will take advantage of these free signs, not only to help reduce ozone, but to increase their business.”

In late 2013, a $99,000 grant was made possible through the North Central Texas Council of Governments and the Department of Energy and about $15,000 is actually being spent on the free signs. Kent advises that the final cost depends on how many signs the North Texas Commission places, but it is hopeful that there will be at least 300 free signs. The signs are made of engineer grade reflective aluminum, the same material of which handicap signs are made. They are 12-inches-by-18-inches and 63-mil thick.  

Courtesy of NCTCOG.

At Earth Day Texas, April 26-27, in Fair Park, NTC will present a program on the signs at 1 p.m. on each day at their booth. Event-goers will be able to apply for the signs throughout the day, said Kent.

“We’re also contacting various groups and businesses. For those who are interested, we’ll install the free signs ourselves. There are still plenty to be had.”

Presently, some businesses have a variety of reserved parking signs and because they are not readily visible, people ignore them. It is the North Texas Commission’s hope that by stabilizing the signs, it will be easier for people to see them. The signs can either be mounted on a wall or placed on poles.

A second phase of the program is a Smartphone app and website for AFV drivers, providing real-time information on AFV re-fueling stations and the location of businesses that offer preferred parking for AFVs.  

“We’re hopeful to launch the Smartphone app and website this summer,” shares Kent. “It is called the ‘NTX App Challenge’ and will involve local software companies competing in an effort to develop the base application. The Smartphones will tell people where these parking spaces are located.”  

For more information or to request a sign, contact Robert Kent at [email protected].

Courtesy of

Minnie Payne is a Carrolton-based freelance writer. She’s written for Pegasus News, Frisco Style Magazine and Seedstock. She presently freelances for Living Magazine, The Senior Voice and Your Speakeasy. She can be reached at [email protected].

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