Parking kiosks going live at Weirs Beach
By RICK GREEN, LACONIA DAILY SUN
LACONIA — Workers installed the last of 15 parking pay stations in The Weirs on Tuesday and the new system was set to go into operation on Wednesday.
The computerized solar-powered parking kiosks, which accept coins and credit cards, but not paper bills, replaced more than 200 meters that were in place throughout the area.
The parking system cost about $100,000 and is part of the $4.3 million Lakeside Avenue Improvement Project, which included placement of electrical lines underground, installation of new streetlights, resurfacing of the roadway and upgrade of sidewalks.
Luke Powell, assistant Public Works director, said the system was undergoing final testing on Tuesday. The kiosks have many advantages over parking meters, he said.
“The convenience is huge,” Powell said. “A lot of people don't carry the coins they need to feed a meter for the length of time they'd like to park. There is less maintenance. The coins don't have to be emptied as often. They look good.”
Parking fees along Lakeside Avenue will be $1 an hour, double what it cost to use the meters.
Kiosks installed at the Endicott Beach parking lot will be $2 an hour. The previous rate was $10 per day.
Parking spaces are numbered. Motorists will go to the kiosk near their spot, enter the parking space number and pay for their time.
If you're cruising Lake Winnipesaukee on the Mount Washington and notice your parking time is about to elapse, no problem. There's an app for that. Using a cell phone or a tablet, you can buy more time.
Likewise, police can monitor parking compliance by looking at an app. Those parked in a space without proper payment could face a $10 parking ticket.
The kiosks, which will be in operation from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m., will be unbolted after Columbus Day and placed in storage until next year, when they will re-installed for Memorial Day Weekend.
Steve St. Pierre uncovers one of the new parking kiosks along Lakeside Avenue at The Weirs. The covers were installed for Motorcycle Week, making parking free at that time, but they will be active through Columbus Day. Parking will be $1 an hour. (Adam Drapcho/Laconia Daily Sun)