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Updated: Charlottesville Approves Downtown Parking Meter Program

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Meeting of the Charlottesville City Council (FILE IMAGE) Meeting of the Charlottesville City Council (FILE IMAGE)
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) -

Charlottesville City Council is putting a pilot program in place that will add parking meters around the Downtown Mall.

During a late-night meeting Wednesday, July 5, councilors approved setting a rate for the meters of $1.80 per hour from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

The parking meter equipment will cost about $50,000 and is expected to be installed by early September. The meters will accept coins or credit cards, but not cash.

Additionally, the parking rate at the Market Street Parking Garage is dropping from $2.50 per hour to $1.50 per hour with the first hour free. The city is also offering a free Park and Ride Lot on Avon Street. It can be accessed using the Number 2 bus route with a stop located right in front of the lot.

Councilors agreed to create a parking advisory panel which would be made up of seven members representing business owners, employees, and residents near the downtown area.

Council also heard recommendations on updates to city code, including the ability for people to make payments with credit cards or by phone.

After six months, the Charlottesville City Council will decide whether or not the parking meter pilot program was successful.

07/11/2017 Release from Charlottesville:

CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA - On July 5, 2017, the Charlottesville City Council approved a six month pilot program for metered parking on 105 parking spaces immediately surrounding the Downtown Mall.

The council resolution approved a rate of $1.80 per hour with the requirement to pay the meters between 8:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. Monday through Saturday. The city's goal is to begin the program on the morning of Tuesday, September 5, 2017.

A mixture of modern single space meters and multi-space pay stations will be installed. The meters will accept coins or credit cards. The machines will not be able to make change or accept currency. Most of the parking spaces in the area are currently either loading zones or restricted parking to a maximum of two hours.

There are no plans to change any of the parking space restrictions for the pilot program.

Parking in the marked disable spaces will remain free of charge.

Simultaneously, the city will reduce the parking rate in the Market Street Garage from $2.50 per hour to $1.50 per hour with the first hour free. Based on the rate change, two hour validations will no longer be accepted in the Market Street Garage.

During the pilot period the public will be encouraged to complete customer surveys on what they think of the new program. The city is particularly interested in customer preference for single space versus multi-space meters. Data will also be collected on the use and availability of on-street parking and any changes in the level of business activity in the area.

In support of affordable parking options for Downtown Mall employees, the city has created a free Park and Ride Lot on Avon Street. It can be accessed using the Number 2 bus route with a stop located right in front of the lot.

In addition, the city will begin offering an all-day parking discount coupon to be distributed to downtown businesses. The coupon will allow parking for as long a parker may want between 6:00 a.m. and midnight for a flat rate of $6.50. It is hoped business will use the coupons to split the $6.50 cost between the employer and employee at some shared percentage.

Details on all these plans will be available on the City website at www.charlottesville.org/parking before the pilot begins.

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