The Worcester Canal District parking lot changes the rules on polar park opening day
WORCESTER – The changes proposed to public parking in the canal district before the opening of the polar park prioritize the use of public land and garages and aim to speed up the rotation of spaces on the street.
The city administration presented city council with a full package of proposed changes to the canal district on Tuesday. Some of the required actions fall within the purview of City Manager Edward M. Augustus Jr., while other changes will be submitted to the Off-Street Parking Commission and City Council.
And while the plan focuses on the canal district, city-wide changes are being made in the pipeline to modernize and standardize the system.
In the canal district, recommendations include:
• Creation of specific zones for different types of parking. This includes “no time limit” zones for event parking, two hour parking, one hour parking, 30 minute parking and various zones including residential areas.
• Extension of parking meters to 9 p.m.
Jay Fink, Commissioner of Public Works and Parks, wrote in a communication that extended hours of metered parking will discourage people coming to Polar Park from using two-hour counters designed to turn around for customers and customers. neighborhood visitors.
• Introduce parking rates for employees and residents at the Union Station garage and in the parking lot below Interstate 290.
• Invoicing special rates for events in garages and city grounds.
• Introduce a flat rate for certain metered streets near the baseball stadium and offer monthly permits to employees and residences.
• Institute the Sunday application.
Fink wrote that the city recommends enforcing parking zones and other parking restrictions on Sundays on match days and non-match days in the Canal District.
“Sunday is a busy parking day in the Canal District,” Fink wrote. “The city will not charge for street meters on Sundays like some cities do; however, parking time limits will be enforced.”
Citywide, the proposed changes in the plan include:
• A continuous transition between the old single-space parking meters and the new multi-space pay plate meters in service in the canal district.
• Increase in the meter rate from $ 1 to $ 1.50 per hour; in the parking meter fines for overtime of $ 15 to $ 30; and an increase in monthly permits and hourly rates in public parking lots in the city center / canal district.
Fink wrote that the city retained the one-meter rate for years, while other cities of comparable size adjusted their rates. He noted that Hartford’s rate is $ 2 an hour and Providence’s rate is $ 1.25 an hour. And he noted that the current fine of $ 15 is only a dollar less than the maximum daily charge of $ 16 at the Worcester Common Garage.
Tuesday’s advisers were generally in favor of the plan, parts of which will require approval and go through the subcommittee process. Mayor Joseph M. Petty called this a comprehensive approach to updating the city’s parking system, and General Councilor Gary Rosen said the city receiving parking revenue was “not a sin”.
Rosen said he had first-hand experience with the new meters in the Canal District over the weekend, and said it was easy to understand, although he said an ambassador hired by the city to help customers had offered to help.
Councilors suggested these ambassadors stay with the city at least until the start of the Worcester Red Sox inaugural season. At-large Councilor Morris Bergman has pushed for even more options for employee parking, and General Councilor Khrystian King has expressed concern about the impact the changes will have on neighborhood residents. He said in particular that he was concerned about extending the counting operation to 9 p.m. King said this will force people who come to the Canal District early in the evening to find another location at some point.
Mark Kostovski, the city’s parking manager, said the majority of nighttime games at Polar Park would start around 6:30 p.m., meaning people using on-street parking to watch a game would only have to pay for one hour and one. – half of the parking lot under the current 8pm system, and their car stays where it is.
Kostovsky said the goal was to have on-street parking for short-term trips and to encourage spectators to use off-street parking options.
King and District 4 Councilor Sarai Rivera said they had initial concerns about increasing fines, but District 5 Councilor Matthew Wally said if people don’t want to pay a fine , they can follow the rules.
The parking plan includes an agreement with the Worcester Red Sox on off-street parking rates at certain distances from the park.
According to the proposed parking plan, the city, in collaboration with the team, will implement a flat rate pricing for off-street parking on game days and during special events at Polar Park, within a half-hour radius. mile from baseball stadium.
• “Premium” off-street parking near the park will be fixed at a fixed rate of $ 15.
• “Intermediate” parking within a relatively short walking distance of the park will be fixed at a fixed rate of $ 10.
• “Value” parking beyond will be set at $ 5.
Depending on the plan, the flat rate will go into effect two hours before game time or the start of special events.