LA Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa announces installation of 10,000 new credit card parking meters

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Corey Moore/KPCC

The city of Los Angeles is set to install parking meters that take credit cards.

LA Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa says his city will generate at least $1 million more a year from new parking meters. These aren’t your usual coin-operated machines. Drivers can use a form of payment they’re less likely to leave home without. “So that means you can either use a Visa, Master Card or American Express and you can’t use your library card,” the mayor joked as he flashed plastic and fed a credit card into a new meter at the intersection of Franklin and Hillhurst avenues.

Villaraigosa says Los Angeles expects to install 10,000 of these coin and card parking meters July 1, 2010.

“Credit card meters as you may know generate significantly more revenue than coin meters,” said the mayor. “Approximately 500 of these meters have been installed. They’re currently operating through a pilot program with great success I may add.”

To help promote a greener LA, Villaraigosa says that solar batteries will power the machines. He adds that after all 10,000 are working, the city will maintain the most solar-operated individual parking meters in the country.

It won’t cost more for drivers to use them either. An hour of parking still runs $1 to $4, depending on where you are.

Los Angeles City Councilman Tom La Bonge joined Villaraigosa in this effort. Two hundred coin and card parking meters have already been installed in Los Feliz, which is in LaBonge’s district.

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