Downtown Columbia parking gets an upgrade
COLUMBIA — The City of Columbia Parking Utility plans to replace, install or upgrade nearly all downtown meters starting Saturday through Jan. 13.
This is the plan weather permitting.
They will replace the insides of around 957 meters while keeping the same outer housings of the meters. An additional 710 meters will be replaced by 355 new two-bay meters. All new meters will accept coins, CoMo Park Cards and Parkmobile.
But around 170 meters will not be upgraded or replaced, which accept credit cars, coins and Parkmobile.
"Many of the current meters have outlived their useful life and are experiencing high malfunction rates and maintenance costs," Transit and Parking Manager Drew Brooks said in a release. "It is critical that we replace our old and deteriorating meters, some as old as 18 years, while still maintaining the same number of hourly parking spaces as we currently have downtown."
Two-bay meters will require customers to select which space they want before paying. Single-bay meters will work normally. Benefits of all new meters include: increased security and better data tracking, backlit LED display, which increases accessibility by making it easier to read at night, and a reloadable prepaid card.
Customers can buy a CoMo Park Card from the city. The new card will replace the EZ Park Card. The city will exchange the EZ Park Card for a new CoMo Park Card free of charge by going to the Public Works Department on the third floor of City Hall. The cards are available now.
To learn how to use the new meters and card visit the City Channel's website.