Parking-meter rate hikes presented to Park Ridge City Council
Updated: March 15, 2013 11:19AM
PARK RIDGE — Is it time for Park Ridge commuters and visitors to dig deeper into their pockets when feeding the city’s parking meters?
Director of Finance Kent Oliven says he’s not making any recommendations, but as part of budget discussions last month, he did present the Park Ridge City Council with several scenarios showing how much revenue the city could potentially receive if rates for parking meters and some daily commuter sites are raised.
At 25 cents per hour, Park Ridge’s Uptown and South Park area meters charge “some of the lowest rates around,” Oliven told the City Council.
That’s evident by venturing into neighboring Chicago’s Edison Park neighborhood, where shoppers and restaurantgoers along Northwest Highway and adjacent side streets are required to pay $1.75 per hour to park.
Park Ridge’s commuter lots at Dee Road and Busse Highway, along Summit Avenue east of Prospect, and on Busse Highway charge $1.50 per day, while a commuter lot on Prairie Avenue is $2 daily.
Commuters who park in the Edison Park Metra Station lot pay a daily $2 fee or $40 monthly fee.
Oliven presented Park Ridge’s elected officials with financial scenarios for increasing parking meters to 50 cents, 75 cents and $1 per hour. Scenarios for increasing commuter lot parking rates by 50 cents, $1 and $1.50 per day were also shared.
Raising meter rates by 25 cents could increase annual revenue between $23,300 and $38,800 across all city meters, estimates provided by Oliven show.
Fiscal year 2012 collections totaled $161,366.
Commuter lot revenues could increase between $20,000 and $34,400 if rates go up by 50 cents, Oliven’s information showed.
Members of the City Council did not share opinions about raising meter rates during the Jan. 29 budget meeting.
Gail Haller, executive director of the Park Ridge Chamber of Commerce, declined to comment on potential meter increases.
“Until we actually ask our merchants what they think, I don’t really have an opinion,” she said.
According to Michael Fricano of the city’s Finance Department, it is believed the last meter rate increase occurred between 2009 and 2010. Prior to the change, meters were 5 cents for 36 minutes, 10 cents for 72 minutes and 25 cents for three hours, he said.