Beginning the week of November 2, the Montgomery County Department of Transportation (MCDOT) Parking Management Division will begin replacing more than 1,100 on-street parking meters in Silver Spring with new "smart" parking meter heads that expand payment options. The smart meters accept Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover credit cards in addition to coins or pay-by-cell phone. The changeover is expected to take about two weeks, weather permitting. Last year, MCDOT switched Bethesda’s on-street meters.
"Smart parking meters expand the payment options for on-street meter parking, providing even more convenience for our parking customers," said County Executive Ike Leggett. "These meters have proven to be very popular in Bethesda, making it even easier to pay for parking. I commend the Department of Transportation for their ongoing efforts to use advances in technology to continually improve the parking experience of residents, employees and visitors."
The changeover to new meters reuses existing meter poles and the lower part of the meter head. The display portion of the meter and its internal workings will be replaced with the new technology.
The parking meters use a solar-powered battery system with a highly visible expiration time indicator. The meters have real-time communication capabilities, which allow web-based identification of broken meters and instant processing of credit card transactions that use the highest level of security. Information in the meter window displays parking rates, hours and days when payment is required, and notes parking restrictions.
MCDOT expects to eventually replace all on-street meters in the County’s other two parking districts in Wheaton and Montgomery Hills. MCDOT is also assessing the best options for upgrading meters in lots and parking garages.
More information about parking in Montgomery County is available on the Division of Parking's website.