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Paying for parking in Key West? Do it with your phone starting this week

The famous Key West mural welcomes passersby to the Key West Historic Seaport on Tuesday, Feb. 26, 2019.
The famous Key West mural welcomes passersby to the Key West Historic Seaport on Tuesday, Feb. 26, 2019.

Starting Friday, paying for parking in Key West will get a lot easier.

A new smartphone app will end any racing back to the pay station — or the old-school meters still in place around the island — to plunk down some change or swipe a credit card.

Customers can download the “Way to Park” app, set up an account and start paying the $4-an-hour the city charges.

The new pay system starts Friday, March 1, at four Key West lots: the Key West Historic Seaport, the fire station on Simonton Street, the parking garage on Grinnell Street and the Truman Waterfront Park.

“People have been asking for pay by phone,” said city parking manager John Wilkins. “Now if you’re out at the restaurant waiting on the check or out on the boat and the boat’s late, you don’t have to worry about running out of time.”

Wilkins said the rest of the city’s parking — such as Mallory Square — will eventually get the pay-by-phone option.

Wilkins will be at the new “Mall on Duval” from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday to answer any questions in person. The mall is the city’s pedestrian-only zone along the 500, 600 and 700 blocks of Duval Street.

Gwen Filosa covers Key West and the Lower Florida Keys for FLKeysNews.com and the Miami Herald and lives in Key West. She was part of the staff at the New Orleans Times-Picayune that in 2005 won two Pulitzer Prizes for coverage of Hurricane Katrina. She graduated from Indiana University.


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