Redwood City residents may soon be charged to park on their own streets

Lyanne Melendez Image
Wednesday, September 11, 2019
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Redwood City may charge residents to pay for permits, in essence charging them to park on their own street.

REDWOOD CITY, Calif. (KGO) -- Like so many suburban areas on the Peninsula, Redwood City continues to deal with growing pains. The lack of parking in residential areas there has forced neighbors to demand that the city issue parking permits.

Now, Redwood City may charge those residents to pay for those permits, in essence charging them to park on their own street.

Last February, a neighborhood near Sequoia High School in Redwood City had signs installed reminding everyone that non-residents are only allowed to park for a maximum of two hours, or face getting a $40 ticket.

I couldn't help but look down the street and see all the street parking spaces available.

"It is absolutely working. We had become the parking lot for users of CalTrain and the high school a block away," explained Kimi Wood, a Redwood City resident.

Wood was one of many who signed a petition demanding parking permits for her and her neighbors.

Problem solved? Not quite.

Right now residents are only required to show proof that they live there and they pay nothing for that permit. It's free. But Redwood City now says so many people are requesting those parking permits that the city is considering charging people a fee just to cover the cost to administer the program.

"That was just a proposal that we put out there as a discussion point for the council to consider and provide feedback on," cautioned Christian Hammack, the Redwood City Parking and Transportation Manager.

The suggested amount for now is $60 a year and $30 after to renew.

But Howard Chare said he shouldn't have to pay for a problem caused by someone else. In this case Stanford University which moved into a new building, only to take up a lot of the parking spaces in the neighborhood.

So that area, Broadway in the Friendly Acres neighborhood, is now a designated residential permit parking-only area. There are four in total.

"There are good neighbors but having resident pay for something caused by Stanford is inappropriate," said Chare.

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