09/19/2009 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Lakefront Parking Won't Be Free Anymore

Free lakefront parking will be gone after the summer, if not a little before, Chicago Park District officials said Tuesday.

The private operator Standard Parking will take over the roughly 4,400 parking spots along the lakefront in four to six weeks, the Tribune reports. Park District Supt. Tim Mitchell said the privatization plan "was a done deal back in November," in response to City Council questioning.

The currently free spots will cost $1 an hour once the deal is complete. Park District officials estimate the deal will bring around $700,000 in its first year.

"[I]f you spend the whole day there, it's $8. You can't go see a movie for that," Mitchell said in defense of the plan back in May.