BOSTON (CBS) — Parking at a meter in Boston will soon cost 25 percent more. The city’s transportation department plans to start retrofitting the city’s more than 7,000 parking meters Saturday.

The cost of will increase from $1 an hour to $1.25 an hour. The price hike will mean a quarter will be worth 12 minutes rather than 15 minutes, as before.

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The department calls meter parking in Boston a bargain compared to other cities, citing rates of $2 an hour in Philadelphia, $3 an hour in Washington, D.C. and $4 an hour in Los Angeles.

WBZ-TV’s Ken MacLeod reports.

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Meter prices in Boston have not changed since the mid-1980’s.

Boston Transportation Department Commissioner Thomas Tinlin said, “For the past few years we have been working to revamp the city’s parking meter operation. At one time, due to old, faulty equipment that was easily and frequently vandalized, only about 78% of the city’s parking meters were operational on a given day. By outfitting Boston’s streets with enhanced meter technology, and revising our in-house maintenance and collection system, the on-street meter operability rate now remains consistent at 98%.”

Next month, the city is starting a pilot credit card program for 144 meters in the Financial District, allowing drivers to pay for space on their credit cards.

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The city also plans on unveiling parking meter Smart Cards soon. The reloadable debit cards will be able to be used at many meters in the city.