City Looks to Add More Parking Meters
By Brandi Makuski
City leaders Monday said downtown parking meters could soon be on the way; and those surrounding the university and in other areas are due for an upgrade.
The Chicago- based company Automated Parking Technologies LLC will present a proposal for new “smart” meters to be installed around the university and Ministry St. Michael’s Hospital in 2014. Additional meters could also replace non-metered or permit-only spaces in the downtown area, including the former Centerpoint Mall location. The company will present to the Common Council in August.
Stevens Point Public Works Director Scott Schatschneider said initial costs for the new meters would be substantial, with a cost as high as $13,500 each that includes installation and training. Schatschneider advised city leaders to carefully study the advance material made available prior to the August meeting, so alderpersons could come prepared with plenty of questions.
Mayor Andrew Halverson said while a cost analysis is still needed, the city would use the additional revenue for infrastructure maintenance in the downtown area, including sidewalk repair and snow plowing.
“It would also certainly ease enforcement of some of our parking ordinances,” Halverson said, adding the city currently has only one employee devoted to parking enforcement.
City Alderman Mike O’Meara said having additional metered parking in the downtown area would be a benefit for residents who work in the downtown area.
“I think the real advantage of having parking meters is you keep the circulation up so you’re not buying lots for long term parking,” O’Meara said. “You can let people make economic decisions as to where you’re going to park when they go to work.”