No Coins, No Problem

Birmingham parking meters are now covered by coinless app.

Beginning July 1, motorists who want to park in downtown Birmingham can pay by app if they don’t have coins to feed the meter.

The city has partnered with ParkMobile to cover 4,000 meters in downtown Birmingham. The app is free and can be downloaded from Apple’s App Store or from Google Play.

“The City of Birmingham, Alabama, is happy to partner with ParkMobile to provide our downtown with a contactless payment option for parking, says Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin. “Our partnership with ParkMobile continues the City of Birmingham’s commitment to reimaging our transportation infrastructure.”

Woodfin also noted the benefit of a system that limits commuters’ contact with meters, calling it “a big plus in this age of social distancing.”

Users enter their payment details into the app. Then, when they find a parking space, they activate the app.

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Parking fees remain the same — $1 per hour for meters that allow two or less hours of parking; $0.50 per hour at long-term meters.

Users will also pay a $0.45 fee for using the app. Of that $0.30 goes to ParkMobile and $0.15 covers the card processing fee.

The app also helps drivers find available parking.

“This will be a much simpler, more modern and convenience service for everyone,” said Lakey Boyd, director of strategy and innovation in Birmingham’s Departmemt of Transportation, when the app was approve by city officials in February. ParkMobile has used the intervening time to set up its services.

“As a customer, I will have one app that can give me push notifications to let me know where I am and where parking is available,” Boyd added.

ParkMobile is an Atlanta-based firm.

In addition to Birmingham, the ParkMobile app is available in Montgomery and Mobile and in cities across the Southeast and has about 600,000 users.

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