Denver raises fines for parking violations
Get ready to pay more if you're parked illegally on Denver streets.
What's happening: Starting Feb. 1, fines shoot up $10 for most parking violations, including overstaying time limits.
- A handful of offenses, like parking in a bike lane or accessible parking spot, will go even higher.
Why it matters: The parking citation adjustments — the city's first in 15 years — are meant to more closely align Denver with its peer cities and reduce vehicle congestion, Denver's transportation officials tell Axios.
Details: The fine for parking illegally in an accessible parking space will more than double to $350 to deter people from illegally leaving their cars in spots dedicated to drivers with disabilities.
- Fines for parking in or blocking a bike lane, sidewalk or crosswalk will also increase from $25 to $65.
Of note: Large vehicles parked illegally will see fines increase 900%, to $250. City officials say the spike is intended to crack down on the rise in large vehicles, like semi trucks, using residential neighborhoods to park.
By the numbers: Denver's transportation department issued 418,713 citations in 2021 for a forecasted $19.6 million in general fund revenue, per city data obtained by Axios.
- That's a 5% increase compared to 2019 and a 12% leap in revenue.
- The city only issued about 327,000 citations and collected $13.8 million in revenue in 2020, due to officials suspending enforcement of parking meters and expired tags in the initial stages of the pandemic.
What's next: City officials anticipate an additional $6.4 million in 2022 under the new fine schedule, which will be placed into a special revenue fund for mobility and safety improvements.
Flashback: Mayor Michael Hancock's administration also doubled city parking meter rates this year from $1 to $2 per hour, marking Denver's first increase in two decades. The goal is to funnel the extra revenue into local investments in public transit, bikeways, sidewalk repairs and street safety improvements.
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