Could this be the answer to our Downtown Boise parking prayers?
I just got the word from Adam Park, City of Boise communications director that come next week, there will be a new kid in town, as in new-fangled parking meter kid.
According to Park, a pilot project testing out this new technology in on-street parking meters will begin Monday, May 18 for those parking on Capitol Boulevard in front of Boise City Hall. The project features a single multi-space meter, located at the center of the block, which will regulate all of that block’s parking spaces. (The existing nine parking meters along that stretch will be hooded.)
Downtown drivers along that stretch get to be the beta-testers, using the multi-space, solar-powered meter — which sends its data via wireless transmission — to pay for their parking during the pilot period.
“The ‘pay-and-display’ meter will provide added flexibility to motorists by allowing more payment options – including credit and debit card transactions – than the existing single-space meters,” said the official press release.
Here’s how it works: you pay, then the unit spits out a receipt which you then proudly display on your curb-side dashboard so those antsy bike-riding, ticket-writing parking officers can see the little buggers and not write out those pricey parking tickets.
Parking rates will remain unchanged at 25 cents per quarter-hour. And, you still get the “20 free minutes” feature — there’s no button to push to get it, you just get a print-out of a 20-minute receipt at no charge or you can automatically add 20 minutes to a longer parking time.
In addition to U.S. coins, the meter will take $1 bills, credit cards, debit cards, and Boise City Park Cards. You can also recharge existing Park Cards without paying a visit to City Hall or City Hall West.
TIP: This new, fancy parking machine cannot give change and refunds will not be available. Just so you know.
The multi-space meter is on loan from MacKay Meters and will be tested for a 45-day period. What do you think? Send your comments to: Parking Services, P.O. Box 500, Boise, ID 83701, or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.