So, you think Houston has expensive parking meters downtown? It could be worse.
If you plan to park at a meter anywhere in Chicago, get ready to carry plenty of change: rates will likely quadruple next month for most spots in the city.
At most meters, where a single quarter now buys 60 minutes, the charge will spike to $1 per hour. And by 2013, it will cost $2 an hour to park at those same spaces.
The most expensive spots downtown will increase from $3 an hour to $6.50 the next five years under a lease deal Mayor Richard Daley announced Tuesday.
Despite the rate hikes, Daley hailed the parking meter plan as an innovative approach to surviving the city's deepening budget woes. A private company has agreed to give City Hall an upfront payment of almost $1.2 billion to run Chicago's parking meter system for the next 75 years.