City finishes replacing old parking meters with new multi-space pay stations
A two-year effort to replace all of the City’s aging traditional parking meters with new, smarter parking pay station is now complete. Crews removed the last old meter Nov. 14, and in its place is one of 617 parking pay stations. The new machines let drivers use credit cards as well as coins to pay for their time, and have many other benefits.
The first multi-space parking pay stations went into service in November 2010. Others gradually came online as the older meters were retired. The machines are significant improvements over the old meters in many ways:
- Credit card payments are more convenient for drivers. In fact, about 55 percent of the 5.7 million transactions done using the pay stations used credit cards instead of coins.
- Some metered parking spaces become tow-away zones during critical traffic times. The new pay stations warn drivers when they try to pay for time when they can’t park there. That saves them the expense and inconvenience of a ticket and tow.
- Pay stations are able to charge event rates for events at Target Field, Target Center, TCF Stadium, the Metrodome and the Minneapolis Convention Center.
- The pay stations are solar powered, which saves on battery replacement.
- When a pay station has a problem, it can alert technicians so repairs can be made.
Also, since the installation of the new parking pay stations, the number of tickets issued for metered parking violations have gone down. Comparing year-to-date numbers from this year and last, there’s been a 9.9 percent decrease.
In two years, City crews have removed 6,050 of the old-style meters. When the meters come out, space delineator signs take their place so drivers know which space to pay for. On 80 of the 3,300 space delineators, bicycle hitches were added so people can lock their bikes to the poles. Another 80 bike hitches will soon be added to other space delineator sign posts.
Although the multi-space pay stations have been successful, some new single-space meters were also installed. Around 450 single-space parking meters that can take credit cards are now in service around town, along with 850 single-space, coin-only parking meters.
For more information on metered parking, go to www.minneapolismn.gov/parking.
Published Nov 21, 2012