Parking Enforcement

Parking enforcement and education can help manage the on-street supply and free spaces for short-term parkers. These programs are most effective when targeted to areas with high incidences of observed parking infractions and where short-term parking is favored, like in commercial centers and downtowns.

Benefits & Problems Addressed

Manage parking use: Management, particularly during peak periods, dedicates the most convenient spaces for service vehicles, customers, rideshare vehicles, and vehicles used by disabled people or prohibit on-street parking on certain routes at certain times (such as on arterials during rush hour), to increase traffic lanes.

Control managed parking zones: Managed (or zoned) parking limits use of on-street parking to area residents through a permit program for a specific vehicle, individual, and area (or provide discounts to residents for priced parking).

Improve user information: Produce a transportation access guide that provides concise information on how to access a particular destination by various modes, including parking availability and price. Parking information can include maps, signs, brochures, and various types of electronic communication systems.

Tips & Techniques

Clear & intuitive signage: As cities adopt variable pricing and curbside management, drivers need clear, consistent schedules and signs to readily determine whether parking spaces are available for parking and for how long. Clearly mark special events (street closing or repair), exclusive loading zone hours, car share spaces and street cleaning schedules.

Employee parking: Through transportation & parking programs, allow businesses to share, trade, lease, rent, and sell parking facilities for employee parking to avoid repeat fines where competition for parking is high. Encourage remote parking. 

Electronic/Dynamic Parking Guidance Systems:  Direct motorists from the main access roads of a defined geographic area to parking facilities with available spaces via signage, phone, the Internet, or in-vehicle navigation systems. This strategy reduces parking search traffic which leads to a reduction of emissions and fuel consumption, and promotes better use of existing parking facility capacity.

Encourage parking apps: Many smart phone apps send messages when meters are set to expire with options to add money. Likewise, cities can use beacons to send a message to drivers who park in restricted spaces. 

Hot Buttons:  Unclear and temporary parking rules are top complaints. Work with towing companies to avoid "predatory towing" where parking demand is high. 


"The High Cost of Free Parking" By Donald Shoup