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Indianapolis, Indiana Approves Parking Meter Lease Deal
Indianpolis, Indiana sells parking meters and collections to a private company.

Mayor Greg BallardBy The Expired Meter

Indianapolis, Indiana followed in the footsteps on Chicago, Illinois by deciding on Monday to sell its parking meters to a private company -- a decision that has proved highly controversial in the Windy City. The vote was a close one.

The Indianapolis parking meter deal squeaked through the city council 15 to 14. Under the arrangement council members approved, the city will lease out 3700 metered spaces for fifty years for only $20 million up front. The city will get to share in the revenues which, according to city estimates, will bring in $620 million over the life of the lease. The Indianapolis contract, unlike the terms of Chicago's relatively inflexible deal, does provide the option of opting out of the deal every ten years.

The main player in the lease is Affiliated Computer Services (ACS), a company owned by Xerox, which is the majority stakeholder in a new entity that will oversee the meter system called ParkIndy along with two smaller, local companies. ACS also is a major player in the red light camera and speed camera market.

"Our council had a huge part in enhancing this parking proposal for the benefit of the citizens of Indianapolis, and our city should be proud of that," Mayor Greg Ballard said in a statement. "The ParkIndy team is committed to improving our parking system in a way that will spur economic development and will result in more convenient parking options for residents and visitors. ACS also will contribute to our local economy by bringing 200 additional jobs to Indianapolis over the next two years."

Although the lease passed, many people attending the council meeting were unhappy enough to boo loudly after the votes were tallied according to a report from the Indianapolis Star.

ParkIndy will soon begin installing new electronic pay boxes to replace the standard single head meters in Indy, much like LAZ/CPM did in Chicago. Once the new meters are installed, meter rates will increase.

Detailed coverage of Chicago motoring issues can be found at The Expired Meter.