D.C. Residents to Request Free Visitor Passes for Street Parking

A typical D.C. parking sign
A typical D.C. parking sign

Free visitor passes will be available on request for D.C. residents, but officials such as Ward 3 councilmember Mary Cheh fear that such passes may be misused.

Some believe passes may be sold to the highest bidder for coveted parking spaces. Temporary visitor parking permits have been regularly obtained from local Metropolitan Police Department precincts.

Through a previous pilot program, free passes were mailed to all households in certain neighborhoods. Now residents of all areas that are required to buy a street-parking permit will be able to request a free visitor pass from the department. Those who want a visitor pass must request it.

“The whole thing was supposed to be thought through. That has not happened,” Cheh told The Washington Post.

While not all details regarding the new passes have been released, the D.C. Department of Transportation has said that they will be valid from Oct. 1 through Sept. 30, 2014. They must be used inside the boundaries of the passholder’s advisory neighborhood commission.

Cheh requested a delay in the expansion of the free parking passes from the transportation department. She believes, “We’re not ready to make this change, and the change we’re making doesn’t link up with…how we deal with parking in general.”

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