Evanston is continuing its transition to pay-by-license-plate parking with the addition of 80 new parking pay stations downtown and in other business districts.

Over the next several weeks, about 1,000 single-space parking meters will be replaced with the pay stations. As pay stations are activated on each block, the  meters will be removed.

On blocks with pay stations, drivers can pay for parking by entering their license plate number and completing payment at a nearby station. There’s no need to display a payment receipt on a vehicle’s dashboard, as compliance is monitored electronically.

Drivers can skip the trip to the pay station or meter by using the Park Evanston mobile app, available from the Apple App Store and Google Play, which allows users to pay for parking and extend their time remotely. The app can also be used to track parking history, receive notifications and email receipts and appeal or pay citations.

The Park Evanston app can be used on most city blocks with paid parking, as indicated by Park Evanston decals on pay stations and meters. Users can load payments online using a credit card or in person at the Collector’s Office in the Civic Center, 2100 Ridge Ave.

A 35 cent convenience fee applies to parking charges paid using the mobile app; however, the city waives the fee for drivers who pay for the maximum time allowed, typically two hours.

Pay-by-license-plate stations are already in place in the 1500 through 1700 blocks of Sherman Avenue downtown.

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  1. pay station parking violations

    Can this new system also electronically issue pay station violations?

    1. Still needs PEOs

      Hi Dan,

      I believe the system will still require parking enforcement officers to drive around with the license-plate-reading cameras on their cars and slap tickets on windshields when the computer detects a violation.

      — Bill

      1. Does this new system reduce expenses?

        So, does this new fangled system reduce expenses and if not what is the benefit to Evanstonians?

        1. Yes

          Hi Dan,

          City staff say the pay stations are much less expensive than the electronic parking meters they replace.

          The electronic meters — which were chosen with some fanfare a few years ago to replace failing old mechanical meters — have turned out to not be very durable and need to be replaced.

          The expectation is that the new system will be considerably more durable.

          For those who can figure out how to use the cellphone app, the switchover makes no significant difference in how you pay for parking.

          Those who can’t or won’t use the cell phone app will have to walk a bit further to pay up.

          — Bill

  2. Parking Stations

    Is there any alternative for seniors and the handicapped?  The parking stations are often hard to get to, the instructions are confusing.  It sounds like if you can’t get around easily, and/or don’t use a cellphone, you are out of luck.

    1. Handicapped spaces are free
      You don’t have to worry about paying for handicapped spaces. They are free. Regardless, the parking stations are ADA-accessible by law. So no need to worry about it.

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