By Mike Dunn

By Mike Dunn

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – As the Parking Authority warned back in February (see related story), Smartcards are going away — and today is the last day you can buy them.

The Parking Authority will stop selling pre-paid smartcards after today because sales of the cards plummeted in recent years with the advent of parking kiosks. The kiosks, in Center City and University City, accept credit cards, and most drivers use that or cash, says PPA deputy executive director Corinne O’Connor.

“Once the kiosks were installed throughout Center City and University City, that demand for the Smartcards slowly started declining.”

So after today smartcards are gone, although anyone who still has them tucked into their wallet or purse will able to use them for several months.

“They’re still accepted until the end of this year, December 30th. If you do have a Smartcard that you have purchased, you can still use it until the end of this year.”

This change means that payment at the 6,000 old-style meters in neighborhood commercial corridors will be cash only come 2015. Officials are exploring the idea of a pay-by-phone option for the meters, but anything like that is at least a year off, O’Connor said.

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