Category Archives: Chicago Parking Meter
The first thing Pablo Picker does after parking his pickup truck is to feed the meter.
Picker is a Boston based musician who’s taking his music to the streets–literally–playing music from the back of his truck sitting at parking meters in all 50 states.
This day he sits barefoot in the back of a pickup truck parked on Milwaukee Avenue in Chicago’s Wicker Park neighborhood, playing guitar and singing to a constantly changing audience of hipsters, commuters, parents and children walking by.
Picker had been playing in public for years, mainly in Boston’s Harvard Square where he saw many street musicians getting hassled by police for not having a permit. While Picker was smart enough to get his own busker license, he’s always been uncomfortable with the idea that musicians couldn’t just entertain people in public without the formality of a license.
So after recording a new album, he got the urge to get back on the street to share his music, and decided do a tour playing in public in all 50 states. But he was concerned about the possibility of getting on the wrong side of local law enforcement.
So he came up with a brilliant solution–parking meters.
It took over a year, but 44th Ward Alderman Tom Tunney finally was able to restore paid metered parking to Lakeview on Sundays.
Drivers had to start paying the meters Sunday, September 28th at metered parking spaces on major streets like Clark, Halsted, Broadway, Belmont, Southport and others from 10 AM until 8 PM. Monday through Saturday meters must be fed from 8 AM until 10 PM in most areas.
The alderman told DNA Info a few weeks ago, the move was necessary to promote turnover of parking spaces to allow more people to find parking to shop in Lakeview.
“Saturday and Sunday are the No. 1 and 2 days of economic activity in the ward,” Tunney said. “We need the turnover specifically on those busiest days.
EDITOR’S NOTE: This is a post reprinted from last years (and recycled from some earlier years as well). But, a nutty website like this focusing on parking issues certainly cannot ignore such a red letter day in history like today. Special thanks to our friend Sluggo for reminding us of this very special historical anniversary.
As you dig through your pockets for quarters to pay for your parking spot today, you have an additional reason to curse your parking meter.
Today, for urban motorists everywhere, this day could be labeled an anniversary of evil.
Because this day in 1935, the very first parking meter was installed at the corner of First Street and Robinson Avenue, in downtown Oklahoma City, OK.
Fox Chicago News and a bevy of other media outlets picked up on The Expired Meter’s story on the issues with ParkChicago users getting ticketed while paid up using the app.
Newsradio 780′s Nancy Harty also had a short radio report as well.
City officials confirm that 317 drivers using the recently released ParkChicago pay-by-phone app have reported receiving tickets for an expired-meter violation — even though there was still time on the meter — in the first two months since the app’s rollout began in May.
Chicago Parking Meters spokesman Scott Burnham said only a small percentage of parkers who used the app have gotten tickets, although he didn’t say how many times the app had been used overall to pay meters.
The city has issued 81,868 expired-meter tickets to all parkers citywide since the app became available, although most of those went to parkers using the pay boxes on the street.
The ParkChicago app debuted to great fanfare in a West Loop pilot test in mid-April. It allows drivers to use their Android or iOS smartphones to pay their parking meter without having to walk to the parking meter paybox.
Read more at DNA Info Chicago.
ParkChicago is the pay-by-phone app that allows Chicago motorists to pay for metered parking remotely via their smartphone remotely, instead of having to feed the meter.
“The response to ParkChicago has been very positive as you can tell by the number of drivers who have signed up in just a short amount of time,” said CPM spokesperson Scott Burnham. “Our customers obviously like the ease and convenience of the app, which allows them to avoid a trip to the meter box and eliminates the need of having to walk back to their vehicle to place a parking receipt on their dashboard. It also gives them added flexibility by enabling them to extend their time remotely so they don’t have to rush to get back before their time expires.”
Meanwhile, a change in state law that greatly limited which disabled drivers can park for free at the meters could also save the city a bundle, city officials say.
According to data based on audited financial statements filed by Chicago Parking Meters late last week, the amount of money the city must pay the meter operator when meters are taken out of commission — known as “true up” payments — has dropped dramatically since the revised deal went into effect last June.
Since that time, the city paid CPM $6.6 million in “true up” payments, or an average of $1.65 million per quarter.
In the five quarters preceding the revised deal, the payments averaged $10.2 million per quarter.
Read more at DNA Info Chicago.
Here’s a unique way to avoid having to feed the parking meter–buy your very own parking lot.
That’s what the Edison Park Chamber of Commerce did recently when the group spent $174,000 to buy a 26-space parking lot according to DNA Info.
In recent months Edison Park business owners were enraged when ticket writers for Chicago Parking Meters, LLC wrote parking tickets to drivers who did not feed their meter.
The company just completed a successful pilot test of the app in a four block area of the West Loop where the company saw more than 3,500 people download the ParkChicago app and 1,600 drivers sign up to use it.
The rollout will expand outward from areas adjacent to the pilot area to the rest of the 36,000 metered spaces citywide. Workers will need several months to replace the approximately 42,000 signs with new ones which instruct drivers on how to use the new system. The city and CPM promise ParkChicago will be available everywhere by the end of the summer but hope it’s finished sooner.
“We launched the pilot to garner feedback from the public, and the response from
drivers and local businesses has been very positive,” said CPM’s CEO Dennis Pedrelli. “We look forward to introducing this new service to residents, commuters and visitors around the city, as we continue to seek out new ways to improve the parking experience in Chicago.”
Drivers in the northwest side 45th Ward will continue to park for free at meters on Sundays as Ald. John Arena (45th) has withdrawn his request to bring back paid meters on that day according to DNA Info.
Originally, Arena was one of the small band of rabble rousing aldermen who wanted to restore paid metered parking on Sundays to retail areas of their wards.
Arena had said that drivers were parking in premium spots in or around the Six Corners neighborhood where Irving Park, Cicero and Milwaukee intersect and preventing shoppers from patronizing area businesses.
But now he’s withdrawn his request for paid Sunday meters because he couldn’t get the 25 cents per hour reduction in meter rates in he wanted in his ward for every day of the week.