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Local News

Homewood approves agreement with vendor to manage payment for parking in commuter lots

When Homewood takes over ownership of the train station parking lots in January, commuters will have a familiar tool for making payments after the Board of Trustees approved an agreement with ParkMobile to continue offering digital payment services. (Eric Crump/H-F Chronicle)

With Homewood slated to take control of commuter parking lots in 2022, the village board approved a service agreement with ParkMobile, which will provide commuters with a parking payment method.

The state legislature passed a law earlier this year that discontinues the Chicago South Suburban Mass Transit District, which had managed commuter lots at several south suburban train stops.

The legislation transferred ownership to the village of the following parking lots: the Harwood lot, a new lot north of the Amtrak ticket office and the Park Avenue south lot. According to the village, the district uses ParkMobile as their payment method for commuters and it makes sense for the village to continue with that service.

According to a village document, ParkMobile is a parking payment service used across the country, providing both on-demand and reservation services. Individuals seeking a parking space can pay for a space using a phone app or on the ParkMobile website. The company provides signs in parking lots that instruct customers how to pay for a space. Customers who don’t want to pay using the ParkMobile options can use a credit card at a pay station.

The village will continue to offer paid daily and monthly commuter parking and will also use the parking lots to provide free public parking on weeknights, weekends and during events. That means for the first time, the lots will be available to customers who shop and eat downtown. Parking will be enforced by the police department, which will work with ParkMobile on how to verify customers have paid.

The board will vote on an updated fee schedule on Dec. 14 to reflect fees that will be charged for the new parking lots.

Related story:
Unanimous: Legislature votes to dissolve mass transit agency; Homewood gains control of train station lots (June 22, 2021)

Village officials have not said what the fate of the old pay box system will be when Homewood takes over operation of the commuter lots at the train station, but the agreement with ParkMobile means a digital option will be available. (Eric Crump/H-F Chronicle)

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