Downtown meters to allow overnight parking

Responding to what they called "a great deal of frustration" from downtown residents and business owners, Denver officials on Monday unveiled new signs and parking-meter stickers to coincide with a new overnight parking policy.

City engineers will swap out about 3,000 parking meters for programmable Smart Meters and install about 3,500 signs informing drivers that they can now pay to park their vehicles at a meter all night long, including from 2 to 6 a.m.

Parking-enforcement officials previously ticketed or towed vehicles parked during those times.

"It was simply impossible to do this until we got these new little Smart Meters," said Denver Mayor Bill Vidal.

The electronic meters will work in concert with a new street-sweeping schedule released by the Department of Public Works.

Downtown drivers can park their cars on one side of the street between 2 and 8 a.m. Mondays through Thursdays, when sweepers clean the other side. The meters will not allow drivers to pay for time if it conflicts with the sweeping schedule.

Both sides of the street will be available on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights, while Sundays will remain free.

"Accommodating the need for overnight meter parking is an exciting step for downtown Denver," said Tami Door, president and chief executive of the Downtown Denver Partnership. Door said providing overnight parking for patrons of late-night businesses and guests of residents is an important part of making Denver a "24-7" city.

A Public Works spokeswoman said the new signs and stickers will be posted at 17th Street and Wynkoop Street and expand south and east over the coming months to cover most of central downtown by July.

Public Works urged drivers to exercise awareness when parking at meters.

"Please pay close attention to what your meter says. Please pay close attention to what the sign says," said Public Works Manager George Delaney.

Public Works officials don't think the policy will increase city revenue because increased meter revenue might be balanced by a decrease in parking tickets.

Read more: Downtown meters to allow overnight parking - The Denver Post http://www.denverpost.com/news/ci_17669061#ixzz1HVRkGYlT
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