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3 Taxi Medallions Sold by Phila. Parking Authority, At Bargain-Basement Prices

By Pat Loeb

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- Finally, success for the Philadelphia Parking Authority's taxi medallion auction.

The Parking Authority -- which regulates taxicab operations in the city -- sold three medallions it was offering today, the first to sell since the auctions began last fall.

But the price was far from what the PPA originally hoped for.

Philadelphia Parking Authority officials expected high demand for the first new medallions, needed to operate cabs, in 15 years, and opened bidding at $475,000 each.

There were no takers, which officials attributed to the arrival of ride-share service "Uber" and the fact that the medallions had to be used in wheelchair-accessible vehicles.

So, today's auction was a kind of reset.  And it worked, to an extent.

Three medallions sold, but for only $80,000 each, a fraction of what the PPA had hoped for.

The winning bidder was Freedom Taxi, which is the only company with wheelchair-accessible cabs in Philadelphia.

The owner declined comment, and Parking Authority officials could not be reached.

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