More "Smart" Parking Meters In The Future - ABC5 News Des Moines, IA

More "Smart" Parking Meters In The Future

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Claire Powell

In late July, over 250 "smart" parking meters were installed in downtown Des Moines.

After installing the new meters around the Western Gateway Park community and the East Village, the city said they are planning to expand the meters to more parts of downtown.

There are around 4,000 meters in downtown and only five percent are "smart" right now. The meters accept debit and credit cards, Smart cards and coins.

Of the 6,000 recorded transactions, the city says around 25 percent have been credit cards and the other 75 percent were coins.

"I think we're pleasantly surprised and optimistic and getting good feedback from our users that it's working. So, we're going to start expanding in the next three to six months and people are going to see a lot more of these meters out there," said Frank Cownie, mayor of Des Moines.

Although most people are still using coins, some people around downtown say being able to use their credit card is a good option.

"It will definitely save me a couple of tickets, they're really convenient if I don't have any change or cash on me," said James Bach.

"We use them all the time for the company, on our own vehicles, it's really efficient. You don't have to plug coins or anything, I think it's a great deal really," said Dan McReynolds.

The city says in the future, they are hoping "smart" meter users can pay with their cell phones, but that change won't be coming for a while.


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