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Cleveland - Parking meters get little tracking

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Parking meters get little tracking

 

Cleveland can't tell how much most make

Monday, August 21, 2006

Susan Vinella

Plain Dealer Reporter

 

Park on almost any street in downtown Cleveland, and a parking meter greets you, hungry for quarters. More than 2,000 meters line the downtown streets, most demanding 75 cents to park for an hour. Stay too long and a bright yellow ticket appears on your windshield. That will be $25, please. Visitors grumble that meters are simply money-makers for the city: Last year, Cleveland collected $1.6 million from parking meters. But city officials say their main purpose is to force turnover, which helps businesses that need convenient, short-term parking for customers.

 

www.plaindealer.com

To reach this Plain Dealer reporter: svinella@plaind.com, 216-999-5010

 

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The PD published a companion table detailing some regional cities' meter information - number of meters, number of tickets issued, revenue from tickets, revenue from fares, etc, in 2005.

 

The 8 cities were:  Cleveland, Akron, Cincinnati, Columbus, Detroit, Indianapoilis, Louisville and Pittsburgh.  I massaged the numbers and found:

 

Cleveland ranked third among these cities in number of tickets per meter, with 29.4, and third among ticket revenue collected per meter.  We also are third in fare revenue per meter, collecting $633 per meter, behing Louisville at $721 and Pittsburgh at $636.  Our total revenues per meter are $1,180, second to Columbus by $3.

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yea that table was confusing, i was looking at it thinking that it didnt seem like cleveland was that bad.  i was more interested in the last part of the article with the installation of one meter that printed out the time someone paid to park there to put on their dashboard.  seems like itd be easier to maintain.

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Hmm, 10 years later and the city's public parking finances are still a mess. Totally pathetic that city-owned parking is actually an expense, not a revenue source.

 

Cavs, Indians fans will pay more to park at Gateway garage

http://www.cleveland.com/cityhall/index.ssf/2015/12/cavs_indians_fans_will_pay_mor.html#incart_related_stories

 

...the city's parking department has been "running into the red," leaving the general fund to subsidize parking lot and meter maintenance for the past several years.

 

The article mentions that meter rates will increase to $1.00 an hour, though looks like that already happened last June, so unclear if on-street rates are actually increasing further. In any case, it makes no sense to have a uniform meter rate downtown and, in prime areas, for it to be lower than garage rates. Time to join the modern world and add some variable-pricing. A cheap downtown meter is useless to a vast majority of people if it is always full. 

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Why does Cleveland still have meters?? ParkMobile is quite convenient but I guess allowing people to add more money to the meter would reduce the number of tickets they can hand out.

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^The infrastructure desperately needs to be modernized if the city still relies on individual space meters. That said, allowing people to add to meters cuts against one of their express purposes: turnover. At least in downtown (and similar areas), metered parking is intended to be short term, serving customers, not workers. On the other hand, pricing might be a better tool than hard time limits to serve that purpose. If prime spots are priced at, say, $5/hour, it would promote turnover, increase revenue, and ensure a lower occupancy rate during peak times (which is what businesses should want).

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I think the rate of $1.00 per hour to park downtown is still way too low. I was just in Pittsburgh and it was $3.00 per hour, which I didn't think was unreasonable. They also had parking meters that allowed credit card payment as well as mobile payment. It's pitiful that downtown Cleveland still uses coin operated meters. Even Toledo's parking meters accept credit cards. I haven't seen a study, but I imagine a city could increase its revenue with more targeted enforcement using smart parking meters as well as the fact that there wouldn't be roll over time from one user to the next there is with coin meters.

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Instead of individual electronic meters that accept cards there are the kiosks where you take a printed ticket and place on your dash.

 

Just curious, the  electrometers in Toledo, were they along a street that had recently been redone, where the infrastructure for the meters could have been placed at the time of road construction?

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Instead of individual electronic meters that accept cards there are the kiosks where you take a printed ticket and place on your dash.

 

Just curious, the  electrometers in Toledo, were they along a street that had recently been redone, where the infrastructure for the meters could have been placed at the time of road construction?

 

Regarding Toledo, I don't think so. It looked like the top part of the meter was just replaced with an electronic component. The base was older looking infrastructure.

 

And yeah, a lot of cities have kiosks that give printed tickets, but in Pittsburgh and Detroit, they have you enter your license plate number and that is how it is tracked by parking enforcement. This also allows you to park anywhere in the particular zone and not just one spot.

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Instead of individual electronic meters that accept cards there are the kiosks where you take a printed ticket and place on your dash.

 

Just curious, the  electrometers in Toledo, were they along a street that had recently been redone, where the infrastructure for the meters could have been placed at the time of road construction?

 

We do have those  kiosks on West 6th (just north of St Clair  :wtf:).    I wonder why they haven't spread further?

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Instead of individual electronic meters that accept cards there are the kiosks where you take a printed ticket and place on your dash.

 

Just curious, the  electrometers in Toledo, were they along a street that had recently been redone, where the infrastructure for the meters could have been placed at the time of road construction?

 

We do have those  kiosks on West 6th (just north of St Clair  :wtf:).    I wonder why they haven't spread further?

 

The did a pilot program with them on Chester back in 2013. I don't know what came of that though.

 

http://www.cleveland.com/business/index.ssf/2013/08/cleveland_tests_new_downtown_p.html

 

http://www.crainscleveland.com/article/20130829/FREE/130829740/digital-parking-meters-are-coming-to-cleveland

 

Edit: Never mind, they were just regular credit card meters

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Good god, they had to do a pilot for simple technology that other cities have been using for several years now?

 

Raising rates obviously helps on the revenue side, but the other part of operating in the red is the cost side. It's just totally nuts to think that the city maintains thousands of individual meters and still sends people out regularly to visit each one and empty out all those dimes and quarters. This seems like such low hanging fruit for balancing a budget...

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Good god, they had to do a pilot for simple technology that other cities have been using for several years now?

 

Raising rates obviously helps on the revenue side, but the other part of operating in the red is the cost side. It's just totally nuts to think that the city maintains thousands of individual meters and still sends people out regularly to visit each one and empty out all those dimes and quarters. This seems like such low hanging fruit for balancing a budget...

 

If I'm not mistaken even the kiosks take cash (though it would be one stop for collection on the block rather than dozens....)

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^For sure, but one stop collection; fewer things to maintain and monitor; accepts bills; and has a larger cash drawer, so probably doesn't need to be emptied any more often. Have to believe the operational efficiencies are substantial.

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Instead of individual electronic meters that accept cards there are the kiosks where you take a printed ticket and place on your dash.

 

Just curious, the  electrometers in Toledo, were they along a street that had recently been redone, where the infrastructure for the meters could have been placed at the time of road construction?

 

We do have those  kiosks on West 6th (just north of St Clair  :wtf:).    I wonder why they haven't spread further?

 

Kiosks are also on East 12th between St. Clair and Lakeside, near the public utilities building.  I do wish they would install them in more places.  They are convenient to use, but I'll also say the city needs to keep them up.  I know for a fact they let the one on the east side of 12th street remain broke for months, with just a piece of paper on it telling you to cross to the west side of the street to pay. 

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In my reply I meant to say we had them to. The only other place I've seen them is on 12th.

 

And to answer your question about why they haven't sprrad... probably because the parking department is subsidized by the general fund and there's no money to buy and install new! Lol.

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Well, they could pay for it with some of the multiple parking tickets my partner gets due to not being able to add more money/2 hour limits due to being in court lol.

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Well, they could pay for it with some of the multiple parking tickets my partner gets due to not being able to add more money/2 hour limits due to being in court lol.

 

That's what lots are for.  The meters are for quick stops.

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Well, they could pay for it with some of the multiple parking tickets my partner gets due to not being able to add more money/2 hour limits due to being in court lol.

 

That's what lots are for.  The meters are for quick stops.

Well, you know that and I know that..........lol. I've tried telling him, but I guess he doesn't mind paying the fines.

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OMG, the fact that Cleveland still has coin-operated parking meters shows how far behind the city is in simply taking care of the little things, let alone big-picture stuff......

 

Councilman Kerry McCormack studying app technology as a way to improve downtown parking: Cleveland City Council summer recess

https://www.cleveland.com/cityhall/index.ssf/2018/08/councilman_kerry_mccormack_stu.html


"Save the planet. Move to the city." -- The Downtowner podcast

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OMG, the fact that Cleveland still has coin-operated parking meters shows how far behind the city is in simply taking care of the little things, let alone big-picture stuff......

 

Councilman Kerry McCormack studying app technology as a way to improve downtown parking: Cleveland City Council summer recess

https://www.cleveland.com/cityhall/index.ssf/2018/08/councilman_kerry_mccormack_stu.html

 

Lots of patronage jobs tied to those meters.  Collecting change, servicing them, etc. 

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I'm glad Kerry is doing this, but why does it take a councilman to do this kind of thing? The city ran a pilot project involving mobile payment and credit card parking meters back in 2013, but I can't get an answer as to what happened to that (https://www.cleveland.com/business/index.ssf/2013/08/cleveland_tests_new_downtown_p.html). Doing this kind of "research" that Kerry is talking about should really be done by parking staff in Public Works. But when Michael Cox is your department director, I suppose you probably shouldn't expect much from that department.

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