Glitch forces NYC parking meters to stop accepting cards


The number of parking spaces affected by the Y2K-style glitch.

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Y2K came a little late and only for drivers in New York City. A software glitch caused thousands of parking meters across town to stop accepting cards, according to The New York Times. The payment software was set to end on January 1 and was never renewed. Drivers can use the ParkNYC mobile app or coins while the Department of Transportation reconfigures every single meter.

How bad is it? — Parkeon developed the payment system and is blaming the glitch on an “anti-fraud security setting,” the NYT reports. The issue was resolved on the software side, but all of the meters need to be updated in person. There are 14,000 parking meters for 85,000 spaces throughout the city. The DOT doesn’t have an estimate for how long it will take them to fix the meters one by one.

Your solutions — The meters are still rejecting credit cards and prepaid parking cards. Though coins are an option, the cost of parking in the city is astronomical. The NYT claims parking in Times Square costs $6 an hour and $21 for three hours — a steep ask for loose change in an increasingly card-based city.

Even if you only need an hour, the app forces you to load a minimum of $25 to your account. The iOS and Android app and its corresponding website are simple enough to use, but those less tech-savvy might have a bit of a learning curve. Conversely, those with better app skills might have been actively avoiding handing over their data.

As for parking tickets, the city’s finance office isn’t giving anyone a break. Tickets are still being handed out and will be enforced.