The last old-time parking meter operated by the city of Minneapolis has swallowed its last quarter.
Hundreds of multi-space pay stations -- which take debit and credit cards as well as cash-- started showing up on the city's curbside landscape in November 2010, steadily pushing aside more of the single-space, coin-only meters that have stood on curbs nationwide for decades.
The last of the city's more than 6,000 old-style pay receptacles was removed late Wednesday morning on Washington Avenue S., just west of the University of Minnesota and east of Interstate 35W.
The city of Minneapolis oversees roughly 7,000 metered spaces. During this two-year transition, the city installed about 850 new single-space, coin-only meters in areas where the rates are so low that investing in multi-space stations was not feasible. Also, there are still some meters that take coins and credit cards where there is only a single space to serve.
The city of St. Paul began its transition to pay stations last summer.
The solar-powered pay stations are more convenient for motorists and have produced a sharp jump in revenue for Minneapolis since they were first installed. More than half of the city's parking space transactions have been by credit or debit card, the city reported.