BALTIMORE (WJZ)– The City will adjust parking meter rates based on the demand for the spots.
The Parking Authority will be reviewing data twice a year to determine which areas have higher demand.READ MORE: Summer Surge: As Coronavirus Infections Rise In Maryland, Some Reveal Why They Won’t Get Vaccine; Hogan Says ‘Breakthrough’ Infections Under 1%
Busier areas will now cost drivers an extra 25 cents an hour.
“Try to prompt those parkers to park in areas where the parking is less expensive, and where there is more availability,” says Peter Little of the Parking Authority of Baltimore.
Baltimore’s current rate is $2 an hour.
A recent study showed areas like the Inner Harbor were typically always occupied, which creates a headache for drivers unable to find a parking spot.
“Family and friends, we just don’t come down here anymore because the parking and volume, and we would rather just go out to the suburbs to go the mall and run errands out there,” says Christine Chernaski, who lives in Baltimore.READ MORE: Chaotic Pop-Up Block Parties Disrupt North Baltimore Neighborhood
The Parking Authority is raising the rates on busier roads to free up spaces and to encourage drivers to park in the less popular areas, where rates are going down a quarter or staying the same.
“People will be able to make those choices, ‘do I want to park closer to those most popular destinations and pay more, or am I willing to park a couple of blocks and find cheaper parking,'” Little says.
However some drivers believe this adjustment will have little impact and the higher rates will not keep drivers away.
“We wont have a choice, because if this is what you do, you want to come downtown or the Harbor it forces you to pay it if you want to support our City,” says Nancy Taylor Thomas, who lives in Baltimore.
Baltimore’s new approach follows other major cities including D.C., a model that will be tweaked every six months.
The adjusted rates will affect parking spaces in the central business district before it moves to the outer neighborhoods.MORE NEWS: Lamar Jackson Tests Positive For COVID-19, Misses First Day Of Ravens Training Camp