Pay-by-phone parking meters to expand across D.C.

Two pay-by-hone pilot programs will be expanded to the whole District.

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They are already on parking meters in Southeast Washington, and soon pay-by-phone stickers will be added to every meter in the District.

“It simply gives you another way to pay for parking anywhere in the city,” said John Lisle of the District Department of Transportation.

By July, drivers can phone in their payment with a credit card instead of using coins at any of the city's 17,000 metered spots.

The pilot programs were launched about a year ago. Officials have decided on using the "park mobile” service, which offers pay by phone parking in several other cities and also offers an app for your smartphone.

"Park mobile" will charge a convenience fee -- likely about 30-cents -- to pay by phone.

Last fall, critics of the pay-by-phone program suggested enforcement officers were being alerted when time expires. DDOT insists that's not the case.

“Obviously it does make enforcement easier, but it makes the whole system more reliable. But there isn't an alert system. It isn't that they are sitting somewhere waiting to get an alert that your meter has expired. That's not how it works,” Lisle said.

Officials suggest registering with "park mobile" online to make paying for parking quicker by phone.

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