New parking permit program for Old Town businesses as part of new enforcement changes

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Last week, the City of Eureka announced it would begin parking enforcement at metered spaces and lots. 

There’s also a parking enforcement person to reinforce the two and four hour limits on some spaces. The permit program will help anyone working in Old Town avoid fines while on the job. 

“Before, we didn’t have that. And to try to have enough time on our breaks and lunches to move the car, find a good spot, and make it back, was pretty much impossible. So, yeah, this will make a huge difference for people that park down here. And also with everybody on minimum wage, it’s really hard to pay for those tickets in the long run”, says Annie Bush of Old Town Coffee and Chocolates. 

Businesses told us parking enforcement will also help the flow of customers into their stores.

“I’ve had a studio downtown for six years, and the two hour and four hour parking lots are really rough if you’re trying to work in the studio. So, I’ve had that aspect of it downtown as well. So, yeah. So it’s a consideration for sure. And also, you don’t want to park too close to your shop because you want customers to have access to the store. And, and that’s a priority”, says Steph Godfrey of Eureka Books.

In the meantime, you can still avoid metered parking, but you’ll have to show up early in order to get a desired spot.

“I come from McKinleyville every morning, usually opening around 7:30. And I park the same day every single time. Same spot, right by the Shanty, there’s a police annex right there, and that whole parking lot is not metered. I know that it’s almost impossible to have parking in that lot later in the day, but I always get there early enough. There’s always a spot”, says Jeff Schroeder of Ramone’s Cafe. 

Employee parking permits are valid for a year, and free for the first six months. You can find more information at  

https://www.eurekaca.gov/939/Downtown-Employee-Parking-Permit

Story by Tucker Caraway