Be prepared with quarters...and a lot more of them.
Beginning this weekend, rates have already gone up in the loop and the near north, near west and near south sides. According to the Chicago Tribune, the loop is now up to $3.50 an hour beginning Friday, February 13 and the near north, west and south sides go up to $2.00 an hour beginning February 16th.
The rest of the city is as follows:
- Lincoln Park to $1.00 an hour February 16-18
- North Side to $1.00 an hour February 20-28
- West Side to $1.00 an hour March 1-2
- South Side to $1.00 an hour March 5-9
Although the meter rates in many parts of the city have gone unchanged for years, the city has decided to sell of its vaulable income streams for over $1 billion dollars. Revenues are near $20 million per year but the lump sum injection will help pay for much needed public works projects now and put some money in the coffers for short falls in the coming years. But then what? That can only last so long and a $200 million annual budget shortfall can only be sustained for so long.