Some of the meters have been broken with the tops sawed off and others have been capped with trash.
“I don’t know what’s going on," said Lilia Santana, an employee at Orlando’s Downtown Mini Mart. "I don’t know if they’re going to keep putting them back up but they probably just don’t want to risk, you know, getting them stolen again.”
City officials say all of the meters were stolen.
“‘Cause like at night it’d be late, be like 2 o’clock, I hear it, like, 'ting, ting,'" said local resident Steve Martinez. "People knocking them off with rocks or something.”
The now missing meters have some drivers scratching their heads and ignoring city signs that say how long they can park in a spot.
“And it’s become a detriment to the businesses because we’re not getting turnover on the streets," said Tina McCarty, a parking and venue manager.
In an effort to set things straight the city has been issuing reminders saying, "Parking Limits Still Apply."
Come Monday, those who stay past the limit will receive a citation.
“Citations are a necessary evil to make sure that we do keep some order in our parking," MccCarty said.
City officials are looking into smart meters that allow drivers to keep track of their parking spot with their smartphone. Also at the table is the option of pay by plate, where one machine handles multiple parking spots. However, officials want to keep in mind that not everyone can pay with a credit card.