Writer Predicts No Other Cities Will Ever Privatize Their Parking Meters
NBC Chicago writer Edward McClelland last week boldly predicted that due to Chicago’s horrible experience with it’s infamous and hated parking meter lease deal, no city will ever privatize their parking meters ever again.
There’s only good thing about Chicago’s parking meter deal: no other city will ever again lease its parking concession to a private company.
McClelland points to when Pittsburgh flirted with the idea before turning its back on privatizing their meters.
But humorously, just a week after his gutsy prediction, Cincinnati signed away its parking meters for 30 years and a $92 million upfront payment according to the Business Courier.
In addition, it looks like Sacramento is poised to follow the Queen City any day now.
And while Pittsburgh eschewed privatization, Indianapolis jumped on the meter privatization bandwagon a few years ago.
Here’s the thing. What Chicago’s experience with privatizing its meter shows other cities is that it can be a very lucrative proposition–but it needs to be done properly. If cities learn from Chicago’s errors, good for them. But ultimately, for cash strapped American cities, the money is too good to pass up and ultimately, more cities’ meters will wind up in private hands in the future.
Too bad Chicago had to learn the hard way.
Read NBC 5′s Ward Room post, “Pittsburgh Avoids Chicago’s Parking Blunder.”