Long Beach continuing effort to start initiative to provide free parking for disabled drivers in city-owned lots

The initiative is part of a request from the LB City Council in 2017 to help provide parking to vehicles with disabled placards.

Pexels

Pexels

As part of an effort to improve parking for disabled drivers, the City of Long Beach received an update on a draft ordinance that would allow for free parking for vehicles with valid disabled placards or license plates in city-owned lots.

The update was provided by the Department of Public Works in response to a request made by the City Council in March 2017. The request was intended to help drivers with disabilities, who may face difficulties looking for parking in city-owned lots.

According to the initial request, “For lots where drivers pay when they first park as opposed to when they leave, it has become an issue for disabled Long Beach residents who are able to park throughout the city without paying, but are not afforded that same right inside City lots, which leads to confusion, frustration and accidental incidents where meters go unpaid.”

In the memo, the Department of Public Works stated that it is actively working with the California Coastal Commission (CCC) to draft a Coastal Development Permit (CDP), which would permit the free parking at 11 of the City’s beach lots.

As of now, drivers with valid disability placards or license plates are entitled to free street-parking across the city. The proposed initiative will expand that to city-owned parking lots.

The lots that will be covered in the proposed initiative include Pier Point Landing, Marina Green, Alamitos Beach, Junipero, Belmont Pier, Granada Beach, LaVerne, 54th and Claremont, 72nd Street Mother’s Beach and Colorado Beach.

In an e-mail interview with the Signal Tribune, Malcolm Oscarson, manager of the Long Beach Business Operations Bureau, stated that the reason the City has included beach lots is due to the fact that many of the downtown lots have been sold to private developers– but that some lots will be turned over to the City in the future.

“Currently, the City only retains operational rights to three surface lots– two of which will be turned over by the end of the calendar year. The remaining lot on Broadway and Long Beach Boulevard is anticipated to be handed over in Spring 2020,” Oscarson wrote in an e-mail.

As of now, the initiative does not have an estimated starting date and is currently waiting for approval of the CDP.

“The City Attorney will draft an ordinance once a decision is rendered by the Coastal Commission,” Oscarson said.