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If you live in Royal Oak or have ever been downtown to enjoy their fine dining, a movie, just enjoy the scenery, you know how difficult it is to find free parking and/ or a parking meter downtown. Royal Oak thinks they may have found a momentary solution. The city of Royal Oak is now offering free parking from now until February. As the city transitions to its new parking system, all surface lots and street parking will be free. Their plans are to revamp the current parking system due to the fact that it has been causing multiple issues and the city has been receiving several complaints from residents. The city of Royal Oak plans on having a new system includes meters that scan license plates and an app that lets you know where open parking spaces are located.

The city’s website states that the current meters have an option to pay before you leave, if you forgot to pay when you parked. In addition, there is a five-minute grace period before you have to pay, so if you park and decide later not to leave, you will not be charged. There is currently around 900 of these new meters scattered throughout Downtown Royal Oak that will be revamped over the next few weeks.  City Commissioner Brandon Kolo said “There are some bugs, and we recognize that there are some bugs, and we got to fix the bugs, the system uses camera technology, and the camera didn’t catch when they left and continued to charge them.” If you plain on being in Royal Oak over the next few week, take advantage of the free parking while it last.