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Fail 2.0: Cold Puts Freeze On Parking Meters

By Marcus Gilmer in News on Dec 10, 2009 5:40PM

Photo by Paul Saini
The folks at LAZ Parking - the company that runs the city's parking meters - got an unpleasant surprise from the cold overnight as it got so cold that some of the meter kiosks stopped working altogether. Crain's reports a city spokesperson told WBBM that the meters should be thawed out and working later (by now, we hope). It's just another weather winter battle for the meter folks as meter checkers have to wipe fresh snow from windshields to check for meter receipts.

Friend of Chicagoist The Parking Ticket Geek has even more info, including some background about efforts to winterize the payboxes.

Interesting enough, according to sources within the Department of Revenue, high level DOR officials conveyed their concerns and fears over the performance of the new and untested pay boxes in Chicago's harsh winter environment to Chicago Parking Meters, LLC and LAZ Parking in late summer. These top DOR managers did not want any embarrassing problems due to winter weather, akin to some of the earlier implementation issues back in March, and a mass outage of hundreds of pay boxes located downtown in May.

The two companies did respond to the DOR's requests and have been "winterizing" the 4200 pay and display meters throughout the city for the past several weeks with a tentative completion date of January 1, 2010 according to the company's website.

According to the Geek, officials said drivers should report the number of the malfunctioning meter and refer to that information should they receive a ticket.