Parking woes

Downtown’s new Golden 1 Center is still weeks from opening, but its related parking enforcements are already causing headaches.

I’m not anti-arena. The new home to the Sacramento Kings is not without warranted controversy, of course, but I think it has potential. Still, city officials screwed up in how they changed parking requirements to partially fund it.

The new rules, which increase prices and extend parking hours to 10 p.m. downtown and 8 p.m. in parts of Midtown, went into effect this month with a grace period set to expire October 1.

Yes, it makes sense to charge more and enforce longer hours close to the arena, but what’s the point in imposing stricture requirements on Midtown residents and businesses? It’s one thing asking people to pay more for parking when Paul McCartney performs October 4—but why charge people more if they’re blocks away at a Midtown restaurant?

Similarly, why penalize a renter or homeowner who wants company? The city says it will issue residents 10 temporary guest parking passes a month—sorry and good luck if you’d like more.

In theory, the solution is for more people to walk, take public transit, carpool, etc. But that’s not always feasible and what we’re left with in reality is a poorly executed idea that threatens to alienate visitors, residents and businesses alike.

The city of Sacramento should rethink its new enforcement rules and geographical boundaries—it’s unfair to prioritize revenue over the needs and concerns of those who have, long before the Golden 1 Center was even a blueprint, made the grid their playground or home.