Thursday, June 30, 2005

Don't follow leaders, watch the parking meters

hungry parking meter
Feed me, Seymour.

Another of life's little victories gets more scarce. The WSJ reports (via The Obscure Store)
In Pacific Grove, Calif., parking meters know when a car pulls out of the spot and quickly reset to zero -- eliminating drivers' little joy of parking for free on someone else's quarters.
Bummer. Like you, dear reader, I have better things to spend my quarters on. At least there's still the thrill of actually finding a space. I have poor luck in that arena, but often benefit from Caffeinatrix's legendary parking mojo.

In other high-tech parking meter news, Chicago has installed a few "pay and display" boxes. There's one box per block; a driver pays at the box and displays the receipt on the dashboard. These pay boxes sound like they're worth the hassle of the small extra walk. They allow more cars to park on a block, because spaces don't have to be sized to the largest cars. And you can pay by credit card.

Not only is that easier for drivers, it makes it harder for the likes of John "Quarters" Boyle to add to their coin collections. Of course, some of Mayor Daley's pals will consider that more a bug than a feature.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

You are officially the coolest blogger I know, just for the title of this post.

They allow more cars to park on a block, because spaces don't have to be sized to the largest cars.

Of course, everyone will still leave over half a car's length between them and the car in front of/behind them so their precious SUV's don't get scratched. There's nothing more infuriating than being unable to find parking, and you realize you'd have a perfect spot if THAT car had been just a foot up, and THAT car had been just a foot back...

Anyway, leave it to Chicago to take away the simple pleasure of finding a parking meter with time left. ;)

(Although I do find the boxes convenient, credit-card wise.)

10:09 AM  
Anonymous Jaq said...

Seattle has some new pay and display meters, which are great because you can pay for the full 2 hours and move your car to new spots around town - terrific for when we are over there errand-running. In-n-out privileges for streets :)

11:37 PM  

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