City Council OKs plan giving communities say on parking meter rates

The San Diego City Council on Tuesday gave final approval to a plan that will allow community parking districts to recommend rates for parking meters, and possibly entice drivers to pay for curbside spaces more often.

The plan, passed on a 5-2 vote, sets a goal of having 85 percent of the metered spaces used by drivers by using high-tech meters with flexible pricing systems, so that an hour of street parking could range from 25 cents to $2.50. Council members Sherri Lightner and Carl DeMaio cast the dissenting votes.

More than two-thirds of the meters are downtown, with the bulk of the remainder located north of downtown and in Hillcrest. Both the mayor's office and Lightner's office told the Light the action does not have any impact on La Jolla and there are no plans to install meters here. La Jolla does not have an active community parking district.

The current utilization rate is 37 percent, according to city staff.

Meters are currently enforced Monday through Saturday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., with Sundays and holidays exempted. City officials will have the option of extending the hours until 11 p.m. and adding Sundays.

The city currently generates a gross of $7.4 million annually from parking meters, and the plan could gain nearly $1 million more.



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