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New parking system, cameras among plans for downtown La Crosse ramps

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Smile, you’re on ‘parking camera.’ 

La Crosse’s downtown parking ramps could soon get some new cameras to keep track of who’s using the ramp spaces. 

Assistant police chief Rob Abraham told the city board of public works Tuesday that a new system using a camera to read license plates could eliminate the need for drivers to check in at pay stations in the ramps. 

Abraham said if someone needs to park more than three hours in a ramp, a parking app would be available on the driver’s cellphone.

Another of the 10 proposed changes would be to install electronic signs showing how many spaces are occupied in downtown ramps. 

“I think that would be a very great step forward to have those occupancy signs available for the public,” Mayor Tim Kabat said, adding it was discussed at City Hall “8-10 years ago.”

Police said the electronic signs would save drivers the trouble of entering a ramp and going all the way through without finding an open space.

Below is a look at the 10 proposed changes, which also include extending pay for parking around the universities and hospitals.

(Grab or hold finger to center each slide0

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from UW - La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area. He regularly covers local courts and city and county government. Brad produces the features "Yesterday in La Crosse" and "What's Buried on Brad's Desk." He also writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse. Brad been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.