Parking meters soon to take all forms of payment 

click to enlarge Single-space parking meters are being replaced in order to take any form of payment. - CINDY CHEW/2009 S.F. EXAMINER FILE PHOTO
  • Cindy Chew/2009 s.f. examiner file photo
  • Single-space parking meters are being replaced in order to take any form of payment.

Motorists frustrated with parking meters incapable of taking various forms of payment -- credit cards, debit cards, transit agency parking cards, pay-by-phone and coins -- will be pleased to hear that an upgrade is being rolled out.

The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency last week announced that it is in the process of installing smart meters that can accept all five forms of payment, have larger display screens and show pay-by-phone transactions on the meter display at the nearly 25,000 single-space parking meters citywide.

Last month, the SFMTA meter shop staff completed installation in the Inner Sunset, Noriega, Taraval, Balboa, Lower Haight and Haight and Cole Valley areas. This month, they are working on Twin Peaks, West Portal, Outer Richmond, central Richmond and the Port of San Francisco areas. Parking spaces will remain open for use during installation, as staff needs to only replace the dome and mechanism portions and will reload any time on the meter.

"Upgrading our parking meters is one more step in making our parking system smarter, easier and more convenient for those who need to park in San Francisco," SFMTA Transportation Director Ed Reiskin said. "These benefits will ultimately make our transportation system more efficient, while continuing to reduce the number of citations throughout the city."

All single-space parking meters should be retrofitted by February, with a $515 cost per meter -- totaling $12.8 million. Most of The City's roughly 500 multi-space meters have already been upgraded, each costing $6,600, a total of $3.3 million.

About The Author

Jessica Kwong

Jessica Kwong

Jessica Kwong covers transportation, housing, and ethnic communities, among other topics, for the San Francisco Examiner. She covered City Hall as a fellow for the San Francisco Chronicle, night cops and courts for the San Antonio Express-News, general news for Spanish-language newspapers La Opinión and El Mensajero,... more
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