Capitol Hill first in city for new pre-pay morning parking for partiers (+ the rest of us)

Capitol Hill: First in nightlife, not necessarily first in the morning. The Mayor’s Office this Thursday announced new rules and procedure being put into place as part of the ongoing Seattle Nightlife Initiative.

We’ll have more on the noise code end of things in soon. In the meantime, starting Thursday night with a Capitol Hill-only rollout, Seattle parking payment machines with this blue and yellow label will allow drivers to pay for two hours the next morning for anybody with plans for overnight fun who doesn’t want to try to drive home in the wee hours. (UPDATE: Point of clarity — *all* pay stations in the city are enabled for the two hour grace period. We just got the promo stickers first)


One weak spot in the plan: You can’t buy the morning pass until 10 PM the night before. But we are also told the 24-hour-party people don’t really start motivating until midnight.

In the meantime, no update from East Precinct regarding the “meathead” ordinance designed to give officers a new tool to combat noisy late-night revelers with tickets and fines. Last we heard, enforcement of the rules on Capitol Hill was pending delayed training. So, in the meantime meatheads, please self police.

Here’s the announcement from Mayor Mike McGinn:

Mayor Mike McGinn today announced a pre-payment option for those who park their cars before going out. The mayor also updated the public on the Nightlife Initiative’s Code Compliance Team, taxi zones and a new Amplified Sound Rule for the city.

Starting today, April 21, people will see new blue and yellow informational stickers on the pay stations in the Pike-Pine and Capitol Hill neighborhoods. The stickers explain that after 10 p.m. two hours of parking for the following morning from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. can be purchased to give drivers more time to get home safely and retrieve their vehicles the next day. The stickers will eventually be applied to all pay stations.

 “There is nothing that restaurant and bar owners want more than a safe and vibrant nightlife,” said Quentin Ertel, owner of The Saint and Havana. “The cornerstone of a successful business is return customers, and the key to return customers is having them arrive home safely. The pre-payment option is a brilliant idea that takes great strides toward the goal of having fun and being safe. It’s a win for everybody involved.”

In addition, the City of Seattle will work with property owners and businesses in Downtown, Belltown, Pioneer Square, Broadway, University District and Ballard to set up late-night taxi zones. These new zones will provide a safe and visible sidewalk location for people to hail a taxi. This work is scheduled to take place over the next two to three months.

Another component of the Nightlife Initiative is a new Nighttime Amplified Sound Rule, which sets a limit of 65db(C) on noise affecting residential dwelling units.  The new rule is the product of extensive community input and consultation with nightlife businesses.  It includes incentives for businesses to mitigate noise complaints before facing fines and enforcement action.  McGinn will conduct an annual review going forward, to ensure that rules are fairly enforced.

“The Nightlife Initiative grew out of a need to support our local businesses, encourage a safer nightlife experience and build urban vibrancy in Seattle,” said McGinn. “That’s why a comprehensive approach is so important. The eight components of the initiative all work together to build stronger neighborhoods, public safety and nightlife in our city.”

The Nightlife Initiative’s Code Compliance Team (CCT) has been hard at work.  After extensive negotiations with the State, the Washington State Liquor Control Board last week approved the City’s request to include new public safety conditions in a nightclub liquor license.  Going forward, the City will request that each nightclub show that it has (1) a written safety plan on file, (2) professional training for security personnel, and (3) compliance with fire code occupancy requirements, in order to obtain or renew a liquor license.  At the mayor’s direction, the CCT also worked closely with Seattle Police to address neighborhood complaints concerning a series of “rave” parties at The Citadel, near Othello station.  SPD has sent a nuisance letter to the owner of the property, and the owner is working to address the community’s concerns.

Check out the Seattle Nightlife Initiative’s website to learn more: http://mayormcginn.seattle.gov/nightlife/

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9 thoughts on “Capitol Hill first in city for new pre-pay morning parking for partiers (+ the rest of us)

  1. As a resident of boylston, between pike and pine, i can definitely assure you the meatheads do not self police. Can’t wait to move.

  2. Nice! Can we get a map of where the magic blue+yellow stickers are? So I don’t have to walk around my whole neighborhood to find them? Is it most of the machines or only a few?

  3. I’m not saying that it should be OK for people to make noise in the street late at night…but certainly you had to know when you moved there that it would be loud at night?

  4. Well, no. Because I moved from the east coast. I knew the area but didn’t really think it’d be that bad. Never ceases to amaze me how much young ladies enjoy screaming while drunk. Not even screaming words, just walking down the street shrieking.

  5. This is a great tool in helping keep drunkies off the road! I know there have been times in my younger days when I was on the road and shouldn’t have been, simply because I didn’t want to deal with a parking ticket in the morning, and if I was going to get behind the wheel to *move* my car, I might as well just drive the damn thing home.

    So this is fabulous! Hopefully it will keep our streets safer at night, for drivers and pedestrians alike.

  6. Plus, there’s another (perhaps not unintended)consequence. Anyone who’s really toasted at 2am stands a pretty good chance of over-sleeping past their 10am paid parking. So they’ll get a parking ticket anyway. But at least they won’t have driven drunk to avoid it.

  7. Well, that sucks, ugh…but at least now you know where you are, and you probably have a better idea of where you want to live– or at least where you DON’T want to live. Hope you find somewhere quieter you like more. There are plenty of places that are close-in but still much more quiet than there. Good luck in your search.