8 PM paid parking reaches Pike — rest of Capitol Hill soon to come

The Seattle Department of Transportation has begun rolling out changes that will bring an extra two hours of paid parking to commercial zones across the city. Neighbor Ella found out the hard way that the changes have reached Pike:

Hi there
just thought I would let you know I got a parking ticket last night off of Pike at 7:19PM it appears that paid parking is in affect til 8PM. I spoke with a meter person because I was in shock there was no postings of this and EVERY car on the street had a ticket. I explained that last I heard they were going to start but there was no official start date. I have been looking around online and still cannot locate a official date it went into effect. When I asked where it was posted he pointed at the Pay to Park sign in very small print it says 7AM to 8PM. I drive a scooter and so after wards I cruised up to Broadway I dont see any writing on the Pay to Park signs but be warned…its coming!!! $39 bucks later. I just want people to be aware. 

According to SDOT, it’s not just coming. It’s here.


A representative tells us that the extra two hours of paid parking has already been introduced downtown (including Ella’s experience at 6th and Pike) and is coming to Belltown next:

Part of the parking rate changes that started in March, extending paid parking hours to 8 p.m. for selected neighborhoods has been a block by block effort. Blocks that have been changed have both revised signage on the street and on the pay stations.

The extension of paid parking to 8 p.m. has occurred so far in downtown and crews are now making the changes in Belltown.

Pike/Pine and Broadway’s electronic pay stations will follow in July.

The change is part of an overhaul of Seattle’s paid parking system — here’s the FAQ for the City’s side of things.

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32 thoughts on “8 PM paid parking reaches Pike — rest of Capitol Hill soon to come

  1. Seattle’s got its hand in your pocket every time you turn a corner. Is this money going to pay for the stadium no one wanted, or the cops no one can trust, or the schools that will surely suffer no matter how much money is raised.

    I think the person interviewed has a case to skip paying that illegal fucking ticket, if there was no announcement and nothing but the word of some idiot meter cop to indicate the new rules.

  2. I know a few people that will be excited for this because it means they might not have to circle the neighborhood for sometimes up to 30mins looking for a spot they’ve already paid for.

  3. You’re right! I’m sick of it too!

    I’m going to move to a major US city where they don’t charge for street parking!

  4. If you read Ella’s statement, you would know that the applicable hours were clearly posted….it was not just the word of the parking enforcement officer.

    And, good luck moving to a major city that does not require paid street parking. Or maybe you were being satirical?

  5. I am going to appeal this ticket…Fingers Crossed! Thanks Justin for posting this I have been telling people to be on the look out and am finding many others have already been hit.

  6. I am all for this, but the City should provide more notification of the change, not just a small change in the wording of the signs.

  7. Coincidentally, just before visiting this site I was searching the City’s site to check if the paid parking hours had been extended near Rudy’s, as I am in need of a haircut and do not want a ticket. Maybe I am bad at the internet (I am), but I could not find information regarding where the changes are now in effect. If somebody could post a link I would be grateful. Thank you.

  8. Dude the meter rates here are totally affordable. And the City needs that revenue to keep social services going. It sucks, yeah but I mean, cmon if thats the worse thing you have to complain about in this life, you live a good fucking life.

  9. Compared to NYC parking here is downright cheap, that $39 ticket would be $115 back in NY. I am curious though, is the extra revenue raised from the fees (and fines) enough to justify the overtime for the parking enforcement agents?

  10. Parking is a scarce resource on Cap Hill, and measures that raise the cost of parking have the effect of opening up more parking spots. Rates are much cheaper in Seattle than comparable cities, as someone pointed out above, and it’s not a bad thing to try and nudge people toward bus/foot/bike alternatives anyhow.

  11. And just how would the City do this? Skywriting?

    Yes, they could put something on a City website, but how many people would see that before they park in the affected areas?

  12. Your dreams of finding parking in your neighborhood might not come true. I am going to night classes to get my MBA and had no problem paying metered parking when it was $2/hr until 6pm. Once it became $4/hr I started cruising the neighborhoods just a few blocks away to find free parking. Add 2 more hours @ $4/hr and I imagine more people will be taking your already paid for parking.

  13. The Seattle Times and PI both covered this weeks ago, running articles that the later hours had already begun in the “downtown core”. I’d say 6th and Pike would be “downtown core”. The meters where later hours are already in effect have stickers on them that clearly show the hours. It’s been in the newspaper, it’s posted on the City’s parking website, and it was probably on TV too (not a regular local TV news watcher so I’m not sure). Not sure what else the city could do?

  14. Yeah, it sucks to have to pay more for parking, but in comparison to the lots, we’re still getting a pretty good deal. But one thing the city should’ve thought of to avoid the massive hassle and cost of all the contested tickets they’ll receive was to put up a bigger sign on the parking meter. Just a simple “PAID PARKING HOURS 8AM TO 8PM” in red lettering and bigger than the size 10 font they use on them currently. There’s a lot of space on those meters for such a notification. Or, here’s an interesting thought and one that should’ve also been used when we introduced bike boxes with no notification, send out a mailer informing people of the change and what areas will be affected WHEN, not this waffling and lack of info that Seattle is so good at.

  15. I agree, though I worry about the cuts coming to the buses, when they don’t get their $20 increase to car tabs to pay for a short fall. With the One Bus Away guy now graduated and woring for Google, how will I ever get around so conveniently again? I fear we reached the nadir, and it’s downhill from here.

  16. Most policies in this city are well thought out and work great. We should be thankful we don’t have bigger problems, but we also shouldn’t have to put up with bad policies. Remember, the city government is there to take care of infrastructure so we can get on with our lives–they are not there to harass, hassle or punish us when we’re acting reasonable. We want people ticketed when they park in front of fire hydrants and driveways or when they block an intersection during rush hour. That’s not what’s going on here, and this is not a progressive, environmental trend.

    The city is issuing an avalanche of tickets for two reasons–first, to raise money to cover a budget gap that resulted from overspending and poor planning, and second to punish people as part of McGinn’s half-baked war on people who have the audacity to drive cars. If you want people to take mass transit, how about fixing how Metro is funded so you don’t have to cut routes?

    Removing parking spots and raising parking rates downtown and on the hill is bullshit. Just like the red light cameras with shortened yellow lights and the speed traps on Admiral, West Seattle Bridge and Aurora. None of those things is making us any safer or happier–they are making things worse. Good luck parking downtown at 7 PM now. There is LESS parking than there was before. Every single pay spot is filled because those people HAVE to be there and they HAVE to drive.

    The only way to fight this idiocy is to elect people with more character and more sense. That’s made easier if the current regime’s fundraising schemes don’t pay off. While these unfair practices are still going on, I urge EVERY person to fight EVERY parking, red light and speeding ticket, EVERY time–EVEN IF you know you were in the wrong. Starving this system is the only hope we have of stopping the trend toward becoming like the other urban centers where parking is even more expensive and even more chickenshit tickets are issued.

    And to whoever said we should suck it up because it’s worse in other places–fuck off. I like the fact that Seattle is better than other cities and I’d like to keep it that way.

  17. No, they don’t open up more parking spots. When they extend hours or raise rates, they also remove parking spots in the area. The change is designed to raise money, not to make life more convenient. They raise the most money if every space is filled, all the time.

    And they aren’t nudging anyone out of their cars by making parking less convenient and more expensive, because they’re doing it while bus service is being cut dramatically. Gas is already expensive and people around here love to walk and bike. It’s a simple combination of extortion from working people who are too complacent to resist and pandering to the fascist hipsters who are so enamored with McGinn.

  18. This is a reply to Brian, not SSAnchez, but for some reason I don’t see a reply link on Brian’s message. I think the already-paid for parking refers to paying for parking somewhere in the city for, say, 2 hours, leaving after part of the time and using the rest elsewhere. I read about that when the old fashioned meters were first removed, but haven’t had occasion to use that option in a long time. Does it still exist?

  19. Dude, you couldn’t be more off the mark. Almost all funding for social services comes from federal, state and county levels. A good chunk of the parking revenue does pay for the omnipresent meter maids, whose only social service is relieving you of the burden of having to decide where to spend your hard earned money.

  20. You can park pretty much anywhere in Las Vegas for free! It’s not just street parking either, it’s all the garages. Why? Because they WANT YOU TO SHOP, EAT, GAMBLE, and SPEND YOUR MONEY THERE! I don’t want to live there, but I thought I’d point out to all you nay-sayers who think it can’t, won’t or doesn’t exist that there is a city whose economy depends on people spending time in it and they figured out that charging for parking wasn’t helping.

    Seattle is one of the holdout cities when it comes to extending metered parking hours. Though I certainly appreciate that they’ve given us this much time, I think it should absolutely be restricted to the Metropolitan hub. Yes, I realize the city pretty much shuts down by 6pm, but there are WAY too many residential buildings in Belltown and Capitol Hill. This may force some people out of their city businesses and dwellings because, I assure you, people WILL consider this paid parking factor when deciding where to eat, shop, go to the movies, see a show, etc.

  21. capital hill is becoming increasingly popular so to pay for the wear and tear on the streets it needs to happen. it will also encourage lazy people who could otherwise walk, to leave their car at home. all parking in Seattle is electronic and the hours you need to pay are clearly listed. as are they on the pay to park signs. demand goes up, supply stays constant price also goes up. econ 101 folks.

  22. Don’t believe the hype. You know what tears up the streets? The heaviest vehicles. That would be the buses.

    Street parking isn’t exactly a commodity traded on the free market, either. It’s a monopoly controlled by the city. Supply is a function of how walkable an area is, how usable mass transit is, where attractions and dense housing are located and how much private parking they are required to provide through the permitting process, also controlled by the city. It’s definitely not a constant in or near a city center.

    The price of street parking goes up when the mayor and city council decide to raise it, based on whether they think it will get them more money and still allow them to be re-elected.

  23. Yes, it still exists. But the parking kiosks in the more expensive areas have tickets that look different from the cheaper areas. So you can’t buy parking where it’s cheaper and/or longer max time, then drive to where it’s $4/hr and shorter max time. Obviously, doing the reverse is OK.

  24. Are you from Kent or something? Capitol (not Capital) Hill has been popular for decades. It’s in a major city. You truly believe all the cars parked on the street are just locals who are “too lazy to walk”? How in the world did you draw that conclusion? I live downtown specifically because it’s just a few blocks from everywhere I want to go, and lazy as I may be, I would MUCH rather walk than go through the hassle of getting in my car, losing the spot I already have in my paid-permit parking zone, sitting in traffic, dodging suicidal bicyclists, struggling to find another spot, PAYING for it, and then still end up walking a couple blocks because there’s rarely a spot right in front of wherever you’re heading. The people who have to park are those who do not have the convenience of living near their destination. Logic 101, dolt.