West Hollywood’s dwindling supply of free parking was further reduced Tuesday, as enforcement of expanded parking meter hours began citywide.
Signs indicating the new regulations were installed in late July, and a “warning period” to alert drivers of the new meter hours was in effect throughout August, officials said.
The extended hours will “improve traffic circulation, reduce greenhouse gas emissions from cars hunting for parking, and control prices at private parking lots and garages,” according to a statement issued by the city.
“Additionally, funds generated from longer meter hours will be earmarked for additional Sheriff’s Department and private security patrols that will increase the presence of law enforcement in the community,” the statement said.
As with many laws regarding parking in the 1.9-square-mile city, some residents expressed opposition to the new measure.
“It’s pure greed. City Hall doesn’t need the money,” Scott Schmidt, a former West Hollywood transportation commissioner, said. “We tried this in the late ‘90s and had to roll back hours because people got upset.”
Reducing the amount of free parking hours in the city “ignores the socioeconomic diversity of the LGBT population that visits WeHo,” Schmidt said. “Service employees are hit hardest by this. Even their permits are expensive for someone on minimum wage.”
The new hours of parking meter enforcement are:
-Sunset Boulevard, including surrounding streets.
8 a.m. until 2 a.m. (next day), Monday through Saturday, No Change. New Hours: 11am through 8pm, Sundays.
-Westside, including Santa Monica Boulevard, Beverly Boulevard, Melrose Avenue, Doheny Drive and surrounding streets. 8 a.m. to midnight, Monday through Saturday. 11 a.m. through 8 p.m., Sundays.
-Mid-City, including Santa Monica Boulevard from La Cienega Boulevard to Fairfax Avenue, and surrounding streets. 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., Monday through Saturday. 11 a.m. through 8 p.m., Sundays.
-Eastside, including Santa Monica Boulevard from Fairfax Avenue to La Brea Avenue, and surrounding streets. 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., Monday through Saturday. 11 a.m. through 8 p.m., Sundays.