By the end of 2020, all of the parking meters in the city of Durango will accept credit cards.
Last week, city councilors unanimously approved spending almost $240,000 from the Transportation Services Fund to replace 828 parking meters.
Phase 2 of the downtown parking meter upgrade was scheduled to be completed earlier in 2020, but it was put on hold as a result of COVID-19 budget concerns.
Of the 828 meters that are set to be replaced, 455 of them do not currently accept credit cards. In last week’s meeting, Assistant City Manager Kevin Hall said downtown businesses have requested that all parking meters be upgraded to accept credit cards. Hall also said that historically the city has seen an increase in revenue when a machine is upgraded to accept credit cards.
The 373 meters set to be replaced that already accept credit cards “are the oldest meters in the inventory,” Hall wrote in an email to The Durango Herald. “In 2021, these meters are scheduled to become functionally obsolete and need to be upgraded to latest technology.”
Parking meters generally create between $950,000 and $1 million in revenue. The revenue from the parking meters is used to fund the Parking Division’s operating budget, $750,633 in 2020, and Durango’s transit system.
Within the city of Durango, there are about 1,000 parking meters. Parking meters that are credit card accessible have a monthly $5.50 connectivity fee and a 26-cent transaction fee. However, in a memo to City Council, Hall wrote, “Because of the increased functionality and popularity of credit card meters, it is anticipated that overall meter revenue on these new meters will increase, partially offsetting the increased service fee costs.”