Returning to Cedar Rapids after a brief 20 years away, I've noticed there have been a lot of really positive changes. But there's one thing that kind of caught me off guard. If you ever park in or around Cedar Rapids, watch out.
Where I just came from, Peru, IL, parking was not at a premium.  There were plenty of spaces; enough spots that you could park across them sideways and not one person would care.  That is except for all the people who would suddenly want to park there but complain they couldn’t because someone parked across it sideways.
When I arrived in Cedar Rapids on May 1st, naturally I looked for a place to park.  I kept seeing signs, no parking, parking prohibited, moon pies $1, pay to park, turn around you missed the moon pies, park here but you better pay.  Black eyes and bloody noses if you even think about parking here without paying.  There seems to be a lot of that.  My wife and I were in Chicago once and the place we wanted to go was closed.  It cost $9 for that short stay.  Big cities are usually like that with high-rate parking. But Cedar Rapids, et tu, Brute?
 Look, I don’t like paying for anything.  The fire department had to design new rescue tools because the jaws of life couldn’t even pry open my wallet. But I get very "knives out" when I have to pay for something that I get nothing tangible in return. I also like to complain about things before I’ve learned all the facts.  Facts, so factual ya know?  Turns out, Cedar Rapids parking isn’t really bad at all.  Yes, they do charge but not high rates and they charge mostly during business hours.  You get the 1st hour on the ramps is gratis.  The other spots, nights, and weekends are free.  Ef are double-E, a much easier way to spell, FREE! So, that's not too bad.

The cost of parking in Cedar Rapids is freer than you might think.

I did dive into this parking situation and found out that recently the city switched over to app-exclusive parking. But not everyone was happy about it. According to, some people are confused by the process. I am also curious about where the money from the parking goes. I've yet to find an answer to that.
In the meantime, feel free to download an app that doesn't cost you money. It's 100% free. We even give you stuff. Now, that's what I'm talkin' about!
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