Rochester, MN (KROC-AM News) - The Rochester City Council has approved a new parking rate plan that will take effect next year. It’s been up for discussion for the past couple months and calls for increasing the charge for parking in a city ramp for an entire workday from the current $9.50 to $16 over the next five years. The Council voted to keep the current policy of free parking on evenings and weekends, along with visits lasting less than 60 minutes during the work week.

Contract parking rates will rise significantly with the current average rate of $95 dollars for workday parking rising to over $250 dollars over the next five years.

The rates for parking in metered spaces will rise from the current $1.40 per hour to $1.70 over the five-year plans, which will incrementally increase fines for parking violations from the current $17 to $30, which includes a $12 fee paid to the state.

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The City Council also voted last night to give Experience Rochester a required one year notice of the city’s intent to terminate its existing contract with organization formerly known as the Rochester Convention and Visitors Bureau. Officials have stressed the action does not necessarily mean the city is ending its longstanding relationship with Experience Rochester, but the notice will allow the city to explore all of its options as it analyzes the governance and operations of the Mayo Civic Center.