Drivers lucky enough to find a parking space along a popular commercial stretch of Los Angeles' Larchmont Boulevard will no longer have to search for a pay station. City officials removed 16 pay stations that drew complaints from motorists who struggled with the machines and said they were ticketed while waiting in line to pay. In place of the pay stations, street parking spots now have individual meters that officials say will simplify parking and eliminate tickets. The city of Laredo is working on making parking downtown simpler as well. James Johnson has more, James.
The current parking meters in downtown Laredo have been the same ones the city has used for 10 to 15 years now and the city has decided it was time to upgrade these meters. The city of Laredo wants to make parking downtown easier for consumers. Starting as a pilot program, the new meters the city has installed downtown will now except credit and debit cards on top of excepting cash. Something the city hopes will alleviate some of the problems they've seen in the past.
[cg:newsuper\roberto murillo\traffic safety manager] 14:39:39:18 we get complaints after people would pay that the meter wouldn't register, so this way we can check. 14:39:54:10 we can tell if it's a coin drop or an out of order meter, it can tells us a lot of things
According to traffic safety manager, Roberto Murillo people have a hard time paying for parking because a lot of people don't carry change and for the people who do have dollar bills there's no machine available to break these bills down.
Standup 15:11:15:28 in an era where people are carry less cash and using more plastic the city says upgrading these meters will give the community more options.
The city says these new meter will provide better service, so how do some Laredoans feel about these new meters?
[cg:newsuper\alonzo mills\likes the new meters] 14:56:50:24 I think it's a good idea...things are going technical so everyone's going to the cards. [cg:newsuper\david hinojosa\dislikes the new meters] 14:48:57:10 I think the fact you can use a cc there just trying to get more money from people [cg:newsuper\bruce talamantes\likes the new meters] 14:58:36:23 they're really useful cause it saves us time
The big question is whether or not these new meters will help or hurt business downtown. Miguel Sanchez who runs a store downtown weighs in.
[cg:newsuper\miguel sanchez\laredo sportswear] 15:04:44:26 it will defiantly help us out here since a lot of people ask for change.
Downtown Laredo is changing and with these changes the parking situation the city hopes will be made easier for everyone.
People are probably wondering where the financing is coming from for this project and the transportation department assures me the money is coming out of their own funding. For KGNS, I'm James Johnson.