Credit-card option will boost Metra parking fee

By on May 14, 2010

ELBURN—The Elburn Finance Committee recommended on Monday that the village implement a credit-card payment option for Metra station parking.

Electronic payment machines for commuters to pay for parking with credit cards were installed at the Metra station in January. However, commuters still have had to pay the $1.25-per-day for parking in cash, since the system has not yet been activated. When it is, the parking fee will go up by 25 cents.

“There are several steps that need to happen before it can be implemented,” Finance Committee Chairman Jeff Walter. “Since we will have an increased cost in credit-card transaction fees and the monthly per-machine fee to accept credit cards, the parking rate will have to increase to $1.50. This is consistent with other lots in the area (LaFox and others) that offer a credit card option.”

The village needs approval from Metra to raise the train station parking fee in Elburn, and then a public hearing must take place regarding the use of credit cards.

When the electronic payment system is activated, residents also may use the machines at the train station to pay village water bills, fines, and license renewal fees.

Two payment booths at the Metra station each have four electronic payment terminals.

Walter, who commutes daily by train to work, is looking forward to being able to pay for parking with a credit card.

“I believe that the increased convenience and speed of the transaction (will be a) plus,” Walter said. “Punching in your spot and swiping a card seems like it would be much faster, especially on a nice minus 20-degree February morning. Plus, you (won’t) have to worry about having the cash every day.”

Walter said village officials expect that 33 percent of Metra riders will use the credit card option.