New parking meters likely in Lake Placid

A parking meter on Main Street in Lake Placid. (Enterprise photo — Griffin Kelly)

LAKE PLACID — This village is currently testing new parking meter machines on Main Street, which will most likely be an element of the village’s reconstruction of the downtown thoroughfare over the next few years.

At Monday night’s village Board of Trustees meeting, Mayor Craig Randall said the parking meters in Lake Placid are coming the end of their useful life. Some of the screens have insufficient back lights, making them hard to read, and precipitation and cold weather occasionally jam the credit card and coin slots.

“The electronic pay stations we have along Main Street and in the municipal parking lots are all approaching their 10th year of use; some are already there,” he said. “The technology has moved on. There are other features available with newer pay stations. We are testing two or three vendors’ different equipment to get a read on their effectiveness.”

With regular coin meters, if you pay for two hours of time and then leave after only 45 minutes, the next person who takes that spot gets up to a free hour and 15 minutes of parking. Ticket meters make that impossible; thus the municipality gets more money. However, with ticket meters, you can’t keep putting money in if you need to stay longer. You’d have to wait until one ticket expires and then purchase another to get your money’s worth.

Currently, the village is testing out a different meter in front of the NBT Bank on Main Street, one of the most used parking spots on the street. The new machine gives people the ability to add time to their parking space via smartphone and software like Apple Pay. You can add time to your spot at any time, as long as you can connect to the cellphone app.

“You might not even need a ticket in the future,” Randall said, “which would be a nice convenience. Normally, you get out of the car, walk to the pay station and then walk back to you car and put the ticket in on the dashboard. It’s not a big deal, but it’s extra steps.”

Randall said he wants to try the meter outside NBT himself, but that particular spot has been too busy recently.

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