New Hours and Rates for Federal Hill Parking Meters

| November 20, 2013 | 14 Comments

IMG_1858The Federal Hill Business Association (FHBA) has been lobbying for less expensive parking meter rates in Federal Hill for several years. The Parking Authority of Baltimore, after also receiving input from the Federal Hill Hospitality Association (FHHA), the Federal Hill Neighborhood Association (FHNA) and the South Baltimore Neighborhood Association (SBNA), has decided to make changes to the parking meters in Federal Hill. Parking rates will decrease, but the hours of enforcement will increase.

Previously parking meters were enforced Monday through Saturday from 9am-6pm at $2.00/per hour with a two hour maximum. Meters will now be enforced seven days a week with changes in the rates. From 10am-5pm rates will be $1.50/per hour and from 5pm-9pm rates will be $2.00/per hour. There will be a three hour maximum at all times.

As the Parking Authority was looking for a revenue neutral solution, the extended hours were needed to justify the lower rates from 10am-5pm.  Federal Hill is one of the five areas in the city with $2/per hour parking rate, joining Mt. Vernon, Fells Point, Harbor East and Downtown. Meters on Washington Blvd. in Pigtown are $1/per hour, meters in Hollins Market are $.20/per hour and meters in Hampden are $.50/per hour. Canton no longer has parking meters.

Several groups in the area opposed these changes, including FHHA, which is comprised of many of the bars and restaurants around Federal Hill. “By lowering the rate during the day and adding hours, we feel you have pushed the burden to the hospitality sector,” said Brian McComas, president of FHHA. “$.50/per hour will not save an ailing business, and my lunch business (Ryleigh’s) is better than it has ever been. This has also made it much more difficult on the residents.”

The FHNA also opposed the change. “I don’t know one neighbor who is supportive of what happened. We have a parking crisis in areas 19, 30 and 9, and neighbors rely on those spots to park after 6pm,” said Eric Costello, president of FHNA. “Zero evidence was presented to show that dropping the rates $.50/per hour would make a difference.” Costello noted that continuing to use those spots from 6-9pm each day would cost residents $120/month and more than $1400/year.

The SBNA took a neutral stance on the changes. The FHBA could not be reached for comment by the time of publication.

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  • FuzzyDunlop

    More brilliant work by the Baltimore City Parking Authority!

  • Mike

    This is an outrage. It’s hard enough to find parking after 6pm with the free metered spots. Residents rely on those spots in this overcrowded area. Now it will cost $6 per day

  • Daktari100

    Hopefully this will encourage more Federal Hill residents to walk, ride bikes, or use public transportations…and leave the car parked safely at home.

    • Sandy

      leave their car parked safely at home where?

      • Daktari100

        Wherever their car was last parked. If they didn’t have to move the car every time they went to work, or picked up a gallon of milk, they would spend less time looking for a new parking spot and then making the rest of us suffer with their incessant whining.

        • Mike

          Some of us have jobs

          • Daktari100

            Most of us have jobs, in fact. Some of us make use of public transportation. That’s one of the benefits of city life, access to public amenities. If you need to be able to park a few feet from your front door, there’s plenty of parking available in the County.

        • Patricia Lydick

          That is the stupidest thing I have heard in quite some time. Anyone living or doing business in Federal Hill can not park for more that 2 to 3 hours at a time in the metered areas. The metered areas which are being expanded weekly. If your business does not have a parking lot, your employees have no where to park except in the metered areas or in the garage. This causes potential employees to look for work elsewhere. It causes potential homeowners to run like hell cause no one wants to move their vehicle several times a day.

          • Daktari100

            If you think the only parking spaces in Federal Hill are metered spaces, then you shouldn’t be throwing the word “stupid” around so freely. You might think my opinion is stupid, but yours makes you sound like a cry baby.

  • Chad

    I agree with Mike, residents have a hard enough time parking as it is, this basically makes it impossible to commute out of fed hill for work and expect parking in the evenings.

  • SOBOJO

    There never used to be a parking problem in South Baltimore. I wonder what happened? Could it be over-crowding? Too many rental properties? Or, could it be un-checked development. Who really cares, no one reading this will still be here in 7 years anyway.

    • Daktari100

      Yes. It’s over crowding. South Baltimore is so popular with people, no one wants to go there anymore.

  • Chris Hogan

    Riverside, on Fort & Webster meters just went up to match the times & prices of Federal Hill, added sunday & holidays. It is up from 50 cents/hour before (and no meters 2 years ago).

  • Patricia Lydick

    In response to Daktari100. Reply to my stupid comment
    Okay lets try it this way. Baltimore City is the only municipality in this area who if you want a handicapped parking space requires you to get permission from everyone on your block. If one person refused you do not get it. Also, even if all the owners sign off on it, the city(supposedly) sends out a person to verify that all the residents on the block are ok with it. That means that if an owner says yes, but their tenant who does not speak English and does not understand the question says no, you do not get the space. I know of at least 4 old time residents of Federal Hill who moved out because of the impossibility of getting a handicapped parking space. Also, I know that not all of the spaces are metered. Some are merely posted for residential parking use only which further limits the spaces available for workers and visitors to the area.