Should Boston Start Charging For Resident Parking Stickers?

parked cars boston back bay generic

Parked cars on a street in Boston's Back Bay. (jorgeantonio/Getty Images)

BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) — Resident parking stickers in Boston aren't even a dime a dozen—they're free—but City Councilor at-large Michelle Wu says it's time the city started charging.

Neighboring cities Cambridge and Somerville charge for on-street parking. Seattle, Atlanta, Baltimore, and Portland, Oregon charge for resident parking stickers. New York City is considering it.

Wu said the system hasn't been updated here since the 80s, and that since then, Boston's population has increased by 100,000. She proposed charging $25 per permit.

According to Wu's proposed ordnance, there's no cap on how many permits the city can give out, despite the limited number of available spaces. Wu would put cap the number of available permits.

She would also exempt seniors and low-income households, and offer a visitor pass for $10 for 72 hours.

Mayor Marty Walsh told WBZ NewsRadio's Karyn Regal he isn't a fan of charging residents for parking.

"My concern initially looking at the proposal is that we're asking homeowners and people who live in residences that pay taxes, that pay mortgages, that pay rents, that we're gonna charge you now to park on the street," he said. "I know that already today I've heard some people be upset about the fact that, you know, paying $25, $50, $75 for a parking sticker when they pay all the other taxes, they have problems with it."

The mayor's chief of streets, transportation, and sanitation said the city is working to find solutions to gridlock—including the parking issues that affect Boston's roughly 1,600 miles of curb.

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WBZ NewsRadio's Karyn Regal (@Karynregal) reports

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