City adds more parking meters & updating others

MARQUETTE– The City of Marquette is filled with beautiful old structures. But according to the Downtown Development Authority, some city property from the 1950’s needs updating.

Recently the Marquette City Commission and the DDA adopted the Parking Management Plan. According to the DDA, the plan will replace current parking meters with SmartMeters. The new meters take credit card, coin, and will eventually have a pay by phone option. Installation starts throughout the downtown area the first week in January.

“People are use to everything free, and free parking is very expensive,” Executive Director of the Downtown Development Authority Mona Lang said. “It’s expensive to create, it’s expensive to maintain, and for years our parking system has been running in deficit. We are looking at the long term sustainability of the downtown, and of the organization, as other resources come much harder to come by. We need to balance that with charges of use.”

The DDA said the SmartMeters have an estimated cost of $70,000 and will pay for themselves in a little of a year. The parking changes won’t be everywhere.

Lang assured the upper level of the parking ramp off Third St., Spring St. parking lot and the Lakeshore parking lot will all remain two hour free parking.