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As a new year's gift to the city's motorists, Loop parking hits the $5-an-hour mark effective immediately. The Sun-Times reports: "And the rate rises aren’t limited to the Loop. Neighborhood parking—which cost as little as 25 cents an hour as recently as 2008—is increasing from $1.25 to $1.50 an hour. And downtown parking outside of the Loop increases from $2.50 to $3 an hour." [S-T]