New meters in town parking lots

Answering complaints about Brookline’s multispace parking meters, the town has changed the way motorists pay to park in municipal lots. The new pay-by-space system, which began Monday, means motorists no longer have to return to their vehicle and leave a receipt on the dashboard after paying at the central meter. Instead, motorists will be able enter the number of the municipal space where they parked and pay at the meter, using coins, cash, or credit or debit cards, in a single trip. The new system has been implemented as part of the plan by the Town Administrator’s Parking Meter Task Force to improve the experience of using multispace meters, according to the town. The multispace meters, installed in municipal lots and along public streets in 2011 at the cost of more than $1 million, sparked a backlash from users, who said the machines were slow and confusing, and the process involved in walking from a parking space to the meter, printing a receipt, and walking back to the parked car to put the receipt on the dashboard was particularly burdensome for older drivers. To address the complaints, the town began replacing multispace meters along streets last winter. The change to the municipal parking lots completes the recommendations by the task force.