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Drivers will soon be able to pay for parking using cell phone

Drivers will soon be able to pay for city parking without having to visit a box.

ParkChicago — which allows drivers to pay for city parking using their cell phone — will be finished by the end of the summer, according to a statement from Mayor Emanuel’s office.

The pay-by-cell rollout involves replacing more than 40,000 street parking signs at the 36,000 meters throughout the city. The new signs will provide motorists with instructions on how they can pay using their smartphone, the statement said. The pay-by-cell option is part of a renegotiated 75-year meter contract between the city and Chicago Parking Meters, the mayor’s office said.

The program will tentatively roll out in the South Loop, West Loop, River West and River North before being installed at all neighborhood meters, the statement said.

In April, the city launched a three-week pilot program in the West Loop. About 3,500 people downloaded the app, which drew more than 1,500 active users, the statement said.

The City Council approved the measure last summer.