CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - Over 100 parking spaces around downtown Charlottesville will very soon come with a price.

Starting Tuesday, September 5, pay stations will begin changing $1.80 per hour between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday. The solar-powered pay stations will accept coins or credit cards, but not cash.

The stations require users to enter their license-plate number, enter the amount of hours they want to park, and pay. Parking officials will use an app that has a list of the license-plate numbers that paid.

Charlottesville paid roughly $50,000 for the meter system, which is part of a six-month pilot program for the city.

According to the city, the program covers on-street parking in a 12-block area along Market Street - between East 7th Street and Old Preston - and Water Street - between East 5th Street and West 2nd Street.

"Long-term, we expect this paid parking program to generate more money than it costs to operate it. We would then use these funds for promotions on the [Downtown Mall], for improvements on the mall, cleaning. We want to use that money to help the businesses that are bringing in the customers and employees who are parking for parking," said Charlottesville Parking Manager Rick Siebert.

Also starting Tuesday, the Market Street Parking Garage will lower its hourly price to $1.50 an hour, with the first hour free. However, parking validations will no longer be accepted at the garage.

Rates and validation rules at the Water Street Parking Garage are not changing.

On-street parking will remain free on Sundays. Also, all four-hour handicap spots will remain free of charge.

Charlottesville police are expected to give out warnings during this first week with the new parking meters. After that, people who don’t pay the parking meter should not be surprised when they get a parking ticket.

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