Montclair getting 545 solar-powered parking meters

Montclair is updating all of its public parking meters throughout town.

The Township Council approved a resolution on Dec. 20 for the purchase of 545 single-space parking meters through IPS Group Inc., which was awarded a contract through a cooperative purchasing system.

The contract is not to exceed $254,787.50, according to the resolution.

The older coin-operated meters are being replaced with new solar-powered ones, according to Montclair’s utilities director, Gary Obszarny. Meters along the streets have been replaced, so municipal parking lots are up next, Obszarny said.

The solar feature allows sunlight to keep recharging the battery in the meters, he explained. Therefore, the newer meters will have a longer battery life, saving money and labor, he noted.

The replacement is scheduled for completion by the end of January or the beginning of February, depending on weather, he said.

The batteries would keep the meters working in the case of limited or no sunlight, noted Obszarny. The meters can be programmed to display special messages, such as “free parking,” instead of having a bag placed over the meter. They will reset when someone leaves a parking space.

A related resolution approved by the council authorized the purchase of two public MS1 pay stations with alphanumeric keyboards to go on South Park Street.

They replace the older pay stations and are compatible with the new solar-powered meters, Obszarny said.

The pay stations will also be purchased through the same pricing system and through a contract with IPS Group, Inc. The cost is not to exceed $14,505 according to the resolution.

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