After Labor Day 2020 (September 7), the City of Annapolis will resume charging for parking at City metered parking spaces. Alongside the hourly fees, the City will also resume ticketing for expired meters. The City currently issues tickets for parking longer than the two-hour limit.
The parking fees and fines were suspended when the COVID-19 pandemic began and the State of Emergency was issued in March of 2020. At the time, businesses and retail establishments were hit hard by the closures. When the City began operating Recovery Zones and local businesses were beginning to ramp up operations, the parking fees and fine suspensions were continued in order to help lure patrons back to the downtown shopping district.
“The lots are filling up and, without the normal turnover of the spaces since they are free, people are unable to park,” said City Manager David Jarrell. “The City is spending a lot to maintain infrastructure and provide support to businesses. The parking fees are a main revenue stream that needs to be restored.”
The City does not anticipate a loss of traffic to businesses in the downtown area with the return of meter parking fees.
“Many people continue to pay the parking fees even though they are not currently required,” said Ward One Alderwoman Elly Tierney. “What we are attempting to do is level the playing field and ensure that parking is readily available. Hillman and Gotts garages remain relatively empty and the meter fee structure encourages people to park in those lots.”
As an incentive for downtown to reorient to the parking garages, parking passes were distributed to downtown businesses. In addition, nearby garages remain free during Recovery Zone events (Gotts garage after 5 p.m. Wednesday to Sundays; Hillman Garage after 5 p.m. Thursday to Sunday).
The parking charges for metered spaces in downtown will resume on September 8, 2020.