Columbia's new Ninth Street parking meters don't require coins

Thursday, March 15, 2012 | 10:22 a.m. CDT; updated 8:52 p.m. CDT, Thursday, March 15, 2012

COLUMBIA — Downtown parking is getting another mini makeover with this week’s installation of 40 single-space parking meters. The IPS Group Inc. meters give people the additional option of paying by credit card or cellphone.

According to a Public Works Department news release, the new meters are the second type of parking meter systems in the pilot project and are in place on a two-block section of Ninth Street, from Locust Street to University Avenue.

The new single-space meters are not compatible with EZ Park cards and do not accept debit cards since the meters lack a keypad for entering PINs. Accepted credit cards are Visa, MasterCard and Discover.

According to the news release, the latest parking meters are an addition to the two multi-space systems being tested until mid-May on Ninth Street between Broadway and Locust Street. City staff and the Downtown Parking Task Force will study the results of the pilot project to determine the benefits of credit card and cellphone payment, as well as the difference between multi-space system and single-space meter usage.

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