Athens-Clarke County has implemented a new parking meter system in the downtown area. With the addition of a new downtown deck and the proposals to raise rates incrementally in the next several years, ACC is in the process of replacing its coin operated meters with much more user friendly electronic ones. These new meters are powered by a small solar panel on the top of the unit, making their daily costs to the city negligible.
These new meters will take bills, coins, or debit and credit cards, making them much easier and more convenient for people going downtown to shop or eat. The meters will print out a receipt on a card the size of a standard business card. This is placed in the front windshield of the car and is how the city will check the status of the meter. While they will be lenient at first, officials said that they will soon begin cracking down on people who do not either display the card correctly or do not pay to park.
One benefit of the new system, however, is that if you have paid for two hours of parking and then need to move your vehicle, any of the metered spaces are open to you, simply keep the card in your windshield and the vehicle is covered until the time expires. With this new system, the city hopes to increase the collection revenue from downtown parking and to also make the process much easier for everyone involved.