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Nickels, Dimes and Quarters Parking

After scrambling around through the spare change pockets in my car for quarters, I got to the meters outside the St. Louis County/MN State Office building only to find that I don’t need quarters there anymore!
New Duluth meters now accepting nickles, dimes and quarters

This welcome improvement is, I guess, part of the extensive remodeling that has occurred in the building over the last year or so. Speaking of nickel and dimed, most of the cost of this remodeling came from the failed Obama stimulus package. Here’s (some of) what we got for the money:

Previously, clients needed to visit four different program areas, located on four different floors of the building. This created a complex structural maze adding even more confusion to the sometimes daunting task of accessing appropriate government services. But, in addition to benefiting clients, the new Central Client Area will improve the use of building space, mitigate security related issues, lower cleaning and maintenance costs, and reduces the building’s overall utility bill. The project encompassed the entire first floor of the Government Services Center, and includes, centralized intake for Public Health and Human Services, secure interview rooms, shared reception spaces, heating, ventilation, and air conditioning upgrades, and general remodeling upgrades to meet current building codes for professional office buildings.

Source: St. Louis County Press Release

Related: In May UMD’s Lake Voice News wrote about a Downtown Resident with thousands in parking fines and it looked at some of the concerns about downtown meters, including the fact that they only accept quarters.

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13 Comment(s)

  1. This is awesome. Thank you so much for posting.

    jimmy | Oct 4, 2011 | New Comment
  2. Dude, we all know that Obama is a Muslim, was born in Kenya, spent the first half of his life killing babies and eating fuzzy little kittens.

    There is no way that anything he has proposed, been involved in or even looked at has been successful in any way, shape or form.

    Question | Oct 4, 2011 | New Comment
  3. I’m assuming that you net saavy pdd’ers checked the link under “failed” but … you know what they say what you do when you ass-u-me.

    wildgoose | Oct 4, 2011 | New Comment
  4. I can’t read the meters in the picture to see what has changed. I assume from the title that the change is that it allows nickles and dimes now, but that isn’t much help. Credit card payment or dollar bill payment would help. I don’t carry change.

    Chris | Oct 4, 2011 | New Comment
  5. Crazy life hack:
    You don’t need to carry change. Your car probably has a plastic molded thingie designed to carry change for you!

    hbh1 | Oct 6, 2011 | New Comment
  6. Just don’t forget to plug your meter in Minneapolis before 10 pm at night. $42 fine if you don’t.

    Claire | Oct 6, 2011 | New Comment
  7. I’m glad we got no worries about enforcing meters after the 3 wheeled carts go off duty.

    The city council asked the parking cops to work longer hours to increase city revenue for illegally parked cars. The parking patrol responded that it is too dangerous to work after dark.

    Too Dangerous? in Duluth?
    Aren’t you the cops?

    So making it easier (accepts nickel and dimes) for people to not pay the meters seem like a wast of resources.

    B-man | Oct 6, 2011 | New Comment
  8. B-Man, this is the kind of post that draws attention to a situation that we don’t want changed.

    Also, the “danger” of working after dark in parking enforcement probably has to do with nighttime visibility for a small vehicle that makes frequent stops.

    David Beard | Oct 7, 2011 | New Comment
  9. B-Man, getting ticketed for parking on a side street in downtown Mpls at 8 pm turned me off to hanging out downtown at night-- ok I don’t live there, big deal. But I have friends who live in the Cities who tell me they’ve had similar experiences, and stay away from downtown in the evenings as a result. I don’t think Duluth’s emerging-as-a-destination-downtown would be helped by people having to plug meters in the evenings. During the day, yes, so people don’t monopolize parking spots, resulting in businesses suffering. After 5 pm, give it a rest.

    Claire | Oct 7, 2011 | New Comment
  10. I’m still not sure what these meters take for money….if not quarters, what?

    Iron Oregon | Oct 7, 2011 | New Comment
  11. They take nickels, dimes and quarters. Sorry the resolution on the picture doesn’t reveal that. I’m only a snapshot photographer, anyway, and my 2 megapixel cell cam is on it’s last leg as it is. In fact, if anyone has a working VZW compatible (or unlocked) phone with a decent cam that you could part with for free or cheap, I’d be much obliged.


    As for the DT parking thing I am of two mids on it. I do agree that it could be nice to have more revenue for the city, even from meters. The other is that Claire is, in fact, correct that metered parking discourages people from going downtown at any time. That’s why we have so many malls in this country. What I would like to see would be greater turnover at meters in the evening. I have operated a business in downtown and at 5 pm the meters would fill up with people who would stay there for hours on end. This has also happened with “handicapped” parking permits at meters although now those are limited to 2 hours.

    wildgoose | Oct 7, 2011 | New Comment
  12. Sorry for pompous sounding “in fact” in my last. Hopefully you’ll get what I meant and not what it sounds like I meant.

    wildgoose | Oct 7, 2011 | New Comment
  13. I am not against the “free” parking in the evenings downtown. But the stickers relating the information regarding when the meters are enforced are incorrect in stating that meters are enforced until 8/ 10pm.

    Changing the law would be better than just not enforcing it. If it was changed to “no meters after 6″ it could be used as an incentive to bring people downtown. Currently it is still a perceived barrier.

    And the “cops can’t work past dark” is one of the best lines ever uttered in a city council meeting.

    B-man | Oct 7, 2011 | New Comment

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