Parking Meters Confound Eastsiders

meter.jpgSunset Junction in Silver Lake has fancy new parking meters—the high tech kind that take credit cards and will even call your cell phone (for a small fee) when you’re about to run out of time. In the grand scheme of things, I personally don’t have the time to get in a tizzy over the issue, but as the commenters on Curbed LA show, I am the minority. More than one poster really seems to feel that the issue is a commentary on civilization itself, and it’s a debate that has been brewing since the meters were first suggested. A while back, the LA Times Bottleneck blog wrote about it, pointing to an article that summed up local response:

Some merchants cheer the idea of adding 500 meters, saying it will help customers find parking in an area notoriously short on spaces. But some residents worry that the meters will mean less parking for them — and pressure on the rapidly gentrifying neighborhood. “It seems like it is becoming like every other place that becomes bourgeois,” said Tristan Saether, 24, a bartender who lives and works in the meter-free Sunset Junction neighborhood in the heart of Silver Lake. “It’s one more step toward high rent.” Merchants and residents say parking problems have reached unbearable levels in Silver Lake. Along Sunset Boulevard, the competition for parking is fierce, causing motorists to travel up residential side streets in search of spaces. “Parking is so bad already,” said Kelly Van Patter, who opened an environmentally themed home and garden shop in Sunset Junction two weeks ago. “It’s tough to find a spot as it is.”

Some unhappy parkers are complaining that the fancy Australian-made meters are too complex to use. Actually, they have the same meters in Old Town Pasadena and other parts of LA, and folks in those regions seem to have figured it out just fine, so I’m holding out hope for the local hipsters. But if you really need a primer, has this recent post with a couple of tips from the Department of Transportation. Remember folks, the car itself was a new invention at one point, and looked how well that worked out.

  • Matt

    Silver Lake is a very walkable and bikeable neighborhood. Ditch the car altogether and you don’t have to worry about parking the contraption.

  • Anita Chabria

    I agree! I don’t even mind the hills.