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Parking Pilot Program

Months of studying Oak Park’s wide array of parking rules and regulations led to a pilot program designed to test a range of options for simplifying and standardizing the Village’s residential parking system.

Recommendations for the pilot project were presented to the public at a forum on Nov. 9, 2017 at Brooks Middle School hosted by the citizen volunteers on the Transportation Commission, Village staff and consultant Dixon Resources Unlimited. A PDF of the presentation slides and a video recording of the presentation are posted below.

Feedback provided at the forum and in comments section below on this webpage will be reviewed by the Village's Transportation Commission prior to making a recommendation regarding the proposed parking pilot program at its Nov. 27 meeting.



Comments posted below are monitored and may not appear immediately.


Submitted by Lisa Ruhland on

I attended the meeting on November 9 and listened to the proposal given by Dixon Resources Unlimited and to a number of those making comments and asking questions. I felt that the proposed 72 hour plan is preferred to the Odd/Even plan. I don't know how you can even think that you could propose a plan with only 1400 available parking spots when you have concluded that there are roughly 4500 residences. At least with the 72 hour plan, there are 3800 parking spots. I very much like living in Oak Park and parking is my only complaint and frustration about living there. I live at 1036 Washington Blvd and that location is ideal due to proximity to I-290 and also to Metra, CTA, and downtown. Due to the abundance of Multi-unit dwellings in this area, parking is difficult. And has become more difficult with the removal of a number of parking spots in front on my building and across the street. I don't think I should have to be stressed about finding a place to park when I am driving home. I believe that I should be able to drive to my home and park. I am mindful of the street cleaning days but feel that weekly street cleaning is going overboard. Maybe this could move to once a month.
In proposing the Odd/Even plan with only 1400 parking spots available, what would you have the remaining people do with their cars? Are you trying to say that people want to have a car they should live in a house with a garage or they should move out of Oak Park? That's what it feels like. Like I said, I love living in Oak Park and I don't want a single family home. When I moved in, I rented a parking spot in a lot which now has townhomes on it so I am parking on the street. And I am okay with parking on the street, I would just like to know that there will be a place for me to park my car.

Submitted by Laura JN Rodriguez on

I agree with all your proposals

Submitted by Barry Jung on

Several people at the 11/9 forum spoke in favor of the overnight parking ban and indicated they did "not want cars on MY STREET". The ban is an aesthetics issue, not one of safety, and it is pitting single family residents against condo/rental residents. I don't have children. Should I refer to schools as "YOUR SCHOOLS" when issues of new construction, teacher hiring, new programs are proposed? Should I tell parents those are YOUR schools, don't ask me to pay. This is supposed to be a COMMUNITY of the WHOLE not one of narrow interests. It should be OUR streets and OUR schools. There are those who say that demand will meet the supply if overnight parking is allowed. School demand is currently chasing and meeting supply but we don't penalize parents who have more than one child in school.
Eliminate the overnight ban and create the following truly simple resident parking plan: 1. issue upon request an on-street permit to any RESIDENT car owner (one permit per car), at cost (administrative cost only) 2. the permit would allow parking on any street subject only to snow and street cleaning restrictions (and enforce the restrictions with tickets/towing) 3. cars without permits would be subject to X hour time limits 4. raise the cost of the village vehicle sticker to cover the lost permit revenue.
The aesthetic of an overnight parking ban has long since lost any justification in equity in such a densely populated area as the WHOLE COMMUNITY of Oak Park.
Barry Jung
723 Erie Street 3C

Submitted by Kathleen Huttner on

Wonderful idea !!

Submitted by Leila El-Badawi on

I think the suggestion above is completely reasonable. The two plans suggested just don’t seem feasible. If there were only 1,400 spots with the odd/even plan, I don’t understand what the remaining residents are supposed to do. I feel that that plan should be completely excluded as it really does not work for the number of residents in the area. In regard to the 72-hour plan, I don’t understand what is supposed to happen after 72 hours. Say that someone moves their car to another spot but it’s in the same area, would they get a ticket?

Ultimately, it seems like Barry has come up with the best plan. Parking is a pain right now, but that’s primarily because the construction limits the number of spots. If Oak Park stopped the construction and allowed residents to park on any street with a pass, parking would not be an issue.

Submitted by Steph C on

I wholeheartedly agree with Barry J’s idea! I also agree that the Weekly street cleaning is excessive and seems to rarely happen as it is, two weeks a month seems more practical. I like the idea of issuing special permits for local business employees and opening up the meters by the train stations to all day. This would surely keep some commuters off the residential streets. Both plans appear to require an awful lot of moving around and having to keep track of what day a car was parked in a certain place and that just seems unnecessary. If I had to pick one, definitely the 72 hour as the odd/even limits parking spaces by so much.

Submitted by Jennifer E. Bell on

I totally agree with Mr. Jung. The overnight parking ban is outdated. I asked at the forum what actual data/research the Village is using to justify the overnight parking ban. There was no answer to this--only that this was the "status quo" and "this is a historical decision." The current density issue and the changing of Oak Park from an suburb to urban center with increased highrises and reduced parking lots in the neighborhoods calls for a total reevaluation of outdated policies such as the overnight parking ban. There are more people who live in Oak Park besides single-family homeowners, and yet multiunit dwellers, many of whom own their condos and pay taxes, deserve the same respect that single family home owners get. We also have needs. The overnight parking ban is outdated and unrealistic considering the era we are living in. The proposed parking changes for our area are punitive and treat the multiunit residents of the Oak Park community like second-class citizens who are "lucky to have this option at all." The proposed changes are overly simplistic and only seem to address keeping commuters from parking in the area. The proposed changes do not do anything to actually improve the parking situation for residents who actually live in the area. I am against both of the proposed changes. Neither will work. Neither addresses the issue. This is just a "bandaid" instead of really analyzing other options and changing old policies which only appease the single family homeowners who don't even have a parking problem.

Submitted by Simone on

I agree with Barry! The 2 plans suggested are awful and we really need to do away with the overnight parking ban. I feel overnight parking bans work best in communities of mostly single family homes. Oak Park is densely populated and has a large number of condos and apartments so residents should be able to park on any street if they own a village sticker. This is the only plan that is fair to ALL residents. I already have to remember to move my car every Tues/Wed and park my car 5 blocks away (extended pass) when I'm out of town. Now this! It is ridiculous!!

Submitted by Julie on

This is the simplest solution. I've never lived anywhere that parking is so complicated for no reason. NO EVEN/ODD. I also like the idea of being able to purchase visitors passes like the city of Chicago has, for visitors over 4 hours. NO OVERNIGHT PARKING BAN. Its unrealistic and regressive and punishes those who can't afford single-family homes.

Submitted by Knelson on


Submitted by Annette Miller on

I totally agree with Barry Jung's suggestion. While I own a house with a detached garage, I very much resent paying a ticket for parking in front of my own house. I pay pay property taxes which should allow me to park in front of my own house on the rare occasion.

Submitted by Matt Cormack on

Excellent Idea Mr. Jung!

Submitted by SiDi Huang on

3 nights a month for parking is simply lacking in a day and age where having a car for the commute is necessary for so many of us. Why is there a parking ban where I can't even park in front of my own house? As long as I have a village sticker, I should be able to freely park in front of my house and vacate the street for cleanings. Currently I am just penalized for having a car and no space to park it due to an archaic bylaw.

Submitted by peter harlan on

It was not discussed at the November 9 meeting about what the cost of the Residential/Visitor Permit would cost? Is it a yearly cost? And the 2 hour limit from 9am to 9pm (to park in front of your home/condo in a residential area) is absolutely unacceptable. Come on people, I really have to move my car every 120 minutes during the day?

Submitted by Loretta Olive on

The 2 hour limit is a burden. Can't get the flu, can't work from home, can't take the el downtown for a day, can't just relax at home. You're bound to your car's parking requirements!

Submitted by Kathleen Huttner on

Barry Jung has the best idea yet !! Please take notice of what he outlined in his comment. It would surely satisfy a lot of people and potentially prevent a lot of people from leaving Oak Park.

Submitted by Marc B. on

Here a few suggestions that incorporate some of what is being proposed.

1.) I agree the two hour limit for non-residence is unacceptable for GUESTS of residence. I understand the need to deter commuters from parking all day on Oak Park streets then taking the 'L' downtown, but for guests this is more complicated. Three alternatives: apply the two hour limit to Mon. - Fri. only since most residence would have guests over on weekends (granted, this does nothing for residence who do not work on weekdays), implement a way for residence to register guests so they can stay parked longer, or change the limit from 2 hours to 4 hours. This still deters commuters but opens it up for guests bit.

2.) I'm not a big fan of either Odd/Even or 72-hr simply because you're forcing residence to constantly move and still fight for spaces. My proposal would be that, unlike now that requires us to move two days a week because of street cleaning (which they never do, by the way), change it two street cleaning once a month. On those days that street cleaning is in effect require no parking on one side during the day.

3.) Change the paid parking spaces near the 'L' stations back to all day instead of 3 hours. It generates money for the village as well as gets those people off residential streets.

4.) There was some discussion about the number of permits for residence and their cost. It was proposed that the first permit is one cost, and each additional vehicle permit is more expensive. There seemed some resistance to that so I would suggest perhaps two permits per household at the same cost, and any additional vehicle per household is more expensive. Example: the first two permits are $75/quarter each while anything more then that is $125+. Sorry, but not everyone in the house needs their own personal car.

5.) Also related to cost, their was concern regarding owners and/or employees of businesses and where they can park. I would suggest a special permit the owner of the business can purchase and provide to their employees that allow for parking in residential areas near the business.

Something obviously needs to be done and I applaud those working on it for trying to find common ground for a relatively difficult problem. As mentioned in the meeting last night there is no perfect solution and it's all about compromise.

Submitted by Laura K. on

After recently taking away about 22 parking spaces on Washington between the west and east alleys of Wisconsin, as well as approximately 100-plus spots in the former YMCA parking lot in the lot behind Washington and Pennsylvania Avenue in the recent past, so the Village could earn more revenue on real estate taxes for all the townhomes they agreed to have built instead, AND hiring a professional consulting group to come up with supposedly better and more fair parking solutions, I am astounded by the proposed asinine solutions they seem to have come up with by merely placing more restrictions on people and parking than currently in place. There should be no need for anyone to have to move their car on a daily basis, nor every three days -- as a lot of people either do travel/vacation -- in order to accommodate for so-called street sweeping, which I haven't personally seen in at least two years, and/or supposedly making it harder for snow cleaning crews to get in and out. What about families w/babies having to park blocks away w/child carriers, elderly people who don't simply want to be dropped off at a door unassisted while their other companion parks the car?!
Luckily I have secured private parking, by the grace of God, since my car was declared a total loss after our mid-October flooding and the unlevel street due to all the construction around Washington/Wisconsin, but this still concerns me, especially for the guest parking proposed, nonsensical rules. I had asked MANY moons ago to get a light over here at Washington and Wisconsin, after countless accidents, including me and my former dog getting nearly struck by a car, only to be told by the Village that the light would be "too close to Harlem and would delay traffic; therefore a light would be put in at Home." Well, guess what? Now we have a light at Harlem, will have one at Washington, and already have one at Home. My only hope is that drivers will take alternate routes and not want to be stopped at every single light on Washington, backed up, with their fumes coming into my home with my windows open in the summer, as well as horns blowing at those who don't move fast enough for others' lack of patience. The Village cares about absolutely nobody except themselves and the kickbacks they get for awarding these contracts to others. It had already been publicly stated online how much we were intending/budgeted on spending for the light at the corner of Washington and Wisconsin versus what we are paying in reality.
What a real shame...
Shame on you, Village of Oak Park!!

Submitted by Gloria Hearns on

I wanted to attend the meeting very much but didn't because I feared I would not get a parking spot when I returned back home. I have lived in Oak Park about 20 years and I enjoy living here. However parking has become a real challenge. Non residents (many working out at the YMCA, taking the trains or attending events) are allowed to park in the spots that the residents pay for.

When I come home from work or grocery shopping I have to circle the block several times just to find a park or park on another street. Then I have to remember to call in my car, otherwise I'll get a ticket. And whenever there is an event in the area, forget about it, I can't find a park. This just doesn't seem fair. Why do I have to call in my car when parking on another street when clearly I can't find a park on the street where I pay to park on?

Now because parking is allowed on both sides of the street, it's a REAL NIGHTMARE!

Someone hit my car while it was parked. There's no common courtesy anymore because people just refuse to slow down or pull over to the side just for a moment to allow another driver to pass. I really dread when we get a lot of snow.

Many people I know have moved because they could no longer deal with all the parking tickets and constantly having to move their cars. They refer to Oak Park as No Park.

I'm glad for opportunity for us to voice our opinions and will try to come up with suggestions. I would really like to stay in Oak Park and I'm hopeful the parking will get better.

Submitted by THERESE DOYLE on

Hello, Thank you for looking at the parking issue. I have lived at 836 washington for 3 years. Parking is a never ending source of frustration. I am a nurse midwife at Univ of Illinois Med Center and I work varied shifts - sometimes coming home at midnight - other times leaving at 430 am. Frequently I have to drive around and around looking for parking - always concerned with getting a ticket. Sometimes I have no choice but to park in an illegal area on Grove only to get a ticket - and I find it extremely frustrating. So much so that I am considering moving out of the area. One morning at 430 am I had to walk more than 1/2 block to my car - passing by a man sleeping on the sidewalk. Since Randolph is now open I need to walk through the alley at night to get to my apt. Isnt there a way to assign spots? The parking is NOT CHEAP - and the ticket costs add an additional burden - not to mention the anxiety - so many people park without consideration of others - taking up 2 spots when all parking is at a premium. Why cant Grove be opened up? Thank you
Therese Doyle
836 waashington Blvd

Submitted by Nora Abboreno on

The main issue we have with parking is that guests can only park for two hours near our house (Oak Park Avenue). I am aware that this is an issue mainly with people who are home during the day. That demographic, however, includes those who work from home and retired people. When you include the snow restrictions, I have friends that will not come to Oak Park at any time during the winter.
I would like to see a program similar to Chicago's. Residents buy a certain number of stickers each quarter. Displaying the sticker allows any car to park in a two hour restricted zone for an extended time (in the city that is 24 hours, but it could be 4 or 6 hours in Oak Park). People who do not want the stickers don't have to buy them.
Signage definitely has to be clarified. The snow restrictions in particular are poorly labeled.

Submitted by Shar Mac on

I love the idea of residents buying passes for visitors. I do like the temporary overnight passes you can obtain online, but the current system for temporary daytime passes is not efficient or convenient (you have to call the parking office before 8:00am, so if you miss the window you're out of luck). I would use a booklet of temp passes for when I'm sick or have a babysitter or relative stay for a few hours.

In Somerville, MA you can purchase a reusable guest pass that visitors display in their car. The pass is good for daytime hours only for a period of one year (or a quarter?). It is useful for businesses and individuals.

Submitted by Mark Blum on

Barry Jung said it best!! If the village is trying to simplify parking for residents, they simply should issue a residential parking pass to all residents, who may park anywhere in the village accept the central business district. We should scrap y1,Y2,Y3,Etc. parking. A resident should be able to park their car anytime day or night on the street except when we have street cleaning or snow removal. It should be that simple. If you need to block out a few of the streets for the individuals who feel unsafe (the highfalutin powers-that-be on the single family streets) you can just install signs on those streets that say no parking on this street because the residents feel unsafe with cars parked overnight!! There is no reason to have this incredibly complicated parking system...let's go back to basics folks.

Submitted by Duane James on

I've been a resident of Oak Park for 10 years. It's a great home for my children but I can't afford to continue to pay for permits at night and the cost of living. Tickets being issued for residents that shop in Oak Park fund Oak Park as well as an active member in the 97 school district. An Oak Park resident sticker should be enough. My daughter is becoming a driver in the spring of 2018 and I won't be able to afford 2 overnight parking passes. I'm not fortunate enough to own a home with a garage in Oak Park

Submitted by Elizabeth O. on

It's hard enough remembering to go out and move my car on snow days. I can't imagine having to do this year-round. PLEASE do not choose an even-odd system!

Submitted by Karen H. on

I would like to suggest allowing residents who live in Oak Park to be able to purchase Village stickers which will allow you to park anywhere in Oak Park. Having to purchase a night sticker along with a Village sticker just to park your car on the street is becoming expensive. If you purchase a 24-hour sticker, you need to walk several blocks just to retrieve/park your car which is so ridiculous. My daughter attends UofI in Urbana and comes homes for holidays/breaks/some weekends just to unwind and she shouldn't be penalized to park her car. It's very difficult remembering to move your car on Tuesdays and Wednesdays to the correct side of the street. I'm not too familiar with the snow parking ban but it seems to me that knowing what side of the street (odd/even) to park on when it's snowing is crazy. If it's snowing, most people would want to be inside their homes instead of outside driving around to find a parking spot. I'm a new resident in Oak Park and I find these procedures very hard to understand. I've received over 6 tickets since moving to Oak Park just because of the so-called parking bans/street cleaning restrictions for parking. I believe the Village makes a lot of money on parking alone. There is no need to discourage your residents who live in Oak Park with more ridiculous restrictions or having us pay more money than we are already paying. Thank you!

Submitted by Katy Groves on

Barry Jung's solution is the clear winner. There are also large lots of unused storefronts and space on Madison, including the old Robinson's, that could be made into a residential multi level garage with no restrictions. The spurious $40 parking tickets I've paid since moving from a place with a garage in July should cover the costs of construction. The odd/even solution is monstrous and obviously a ploy to make the 72 hour plan seem generous and well-planned, which it is not. I am a single mother with an adorable one year old who works a second shift job as a therapist. Just tonight I had to take my child in the cold at 9pm for a three block walk home because there were no spots left on the non-street cleaning side of the street anywhere near our home at Madison and Kenilworth. Parking on the wrong side means I'd need to wake up early and leave my child alone in order to move my car, and I'm so worried about missing it that I barely sleep. Is the street cleaned weekly? No. I have one permit, one extremely small Honda Fit, family in the area, and only two major complaints about Oak Park: exclusionary and silly parking rules and weekly mail delivery. No one is going to move out of Oak Park if parking is expanded to be in front of their homes, but people will definitely leave Oak Park for farther west suburbs if you lose your progressive credibility and become a crowded and boring baby Hinsdale.

Submitted by JP on

I want to echo Barry Jung's and others comments. A simple village wide resident permit makes so much more sense than the Byzantine system currently in place.

If the odd even or 72 hour rules are adopted I can honestly say that I'll be moving out of the village. Parking is such a headache already, I am shocked that people were paid money to come up with such ridiculous options. I have never seen such a GREAT community make it so difficult for non home owning residents. Oak Park likes to talk up their liberal and inclusive values, but anyone who can't afford a million dollar home with a garage is treated like a second class citizen. The simple suggestion made by Barry is a great opportunity to rectify this.

Submitted by Echelon Jackson on

I have been a Oak Park resident for over 11 years. And I have to say that the past 3 months have been the most frustrating. Since the parking spaces were removed in front of my building, to make way for unnecessary left turn lanes on Washington Blvd, I have been inconvenienced. During construction, I had to walk blocks just to get to my home. Many times, rushing from work just to get a so-called "good park". Or trying to figure out how to carry groceries in stages. Or delaying plans because I don't want to come home after a certain time because I'd have to park so far away late at night. Now, the village proposes these completely ridiculous odd/even or 72 hour programs. I am awe struck that this is even a consideration. I can not believe any reasonable person would think an odd/even parking option is fair to residents who pay to park!! And the 72 hr option is nearly as bad. PLEASE VILLAGE OFFICIALS: stop with the parking shenanigans. Stop pitting home owners against condo owners/renters of multi-unit buildings. Just stop the madness. If the option is to choose one or the other, I choose none. Keep the overnight parking ban in effect if this is really the best that you can come up with. These proposed pilot programs are not going to help Oak Park residents. These odd/even or 72 hr programs are unreasonable and do NOT solve our parking issues. They only make more people seriously consider leaving this village!!!

Submitted by Judith Warren on

How much will the permits be? Paid quarterly or yearly? Yearly could be a hardship to those who aren’t qualified for-income. How do you plan to fit all the cars on an odd/even schedule? How many people deciding these things actually use the current permits and understand the issues from personal experience? Where do I put my car during vacation? It seems instead of simplifying for those who need overnight parking you are causing much stress.

Submitted by Daniel Lauber on

As Oak Park's senior planner many years ago, I was told point blank by the Chief of Police that the overnight parking ban bore no relationship to preventing crime. The sole purpose, quite honestly, was as so many Oak Park leaders would say, "So we don't look like Chicago." (I'll skip over the many disgusting aspects of that attitude.)

Oak Park, however, should also look at how other higher density, inner ring suburbs have dealt with the overnight parking issue. When I lived in southeast Evanston, we went to an even-odd overnight parking regime when it snowed -- otherwise you could park on both sides of the street overnight. To avoid the expense of posting signs for each street cleaning, a two-hour time period one day a week was designated no parking for street cleaning purposes. It worked.

I hope that Oak Park's leadership won't make overnight parking more complicated than it has to be. And I hope that anybody who opposes easing this inexcusable ban be asked whether they rent spaces on their property to others. In the past, there have been village trustees who rented out spaces thanks to the overnight ban who voted to continue the ban rather than recuse themselves due to this obvious conflict of interest which had financial implications for them.

By the way, there is even less of an excuse for banning overnight parking in River Forest. But with the paucity of multifamily housing (especially affordable housing), I don't have high hopes that any relaxation or elimination of this needless restriction has a chance in hell.

So kudos to Oak Park's leadership for finally doing something about this. Hopefully they will not yield to the regressive elements who seem to treat residents of multifamily buildings as second class citizens.

Submitted by Brandi Carson on

I attended the meeting on November 9, and I just want to start by first saying thank you for sharing the information and for seeking resident feedback. I feel like the conversation was helpful and much needed, and I really appreciated what everyone had to contribute.

I would agree with most of my neighbors who spoke with the concern regarding an odd/even program. Like most of them, I do not understand how an odd/even situation would be helpful or what “problem” it’s even solving. I currently pay $540 a year to park on the streets near my apartment building. Potentially having to move my car whenever I’m home (sick, vacation, late work day start, etc) during restricted daytime hours sounds like a punishment I’m paying a steep amount for. I guess my main question would be...why should residents who PAY to park their cars have to move them in the first place? I understand moving my car for cleaning and snow, but I think what we have now for that works just fine. I can also see why there may be daily/hourly restrictions for visitors in some situations, but why as a resident who displays the proper sticker should it matter which side of the street I park on when I’m paying to do so? I think one of the questions asked on the evening of Nov 9 was “how long is too long for a resident to be parked on the street?” My answer to that would be that if I’m paying to park my car by my residence, and I don’t own a garage, what is the alternative? I have lived in Oak Park for 13 years. I work as a home visiting therapist...serving children with disabilities. I have to have a car for my job. I live in a studio apartment in an apartment complex. I do not have access to a garage. The issue to me is not in resident parking during the day; it is not having enough spaces to park as a resident in the evening. I have found myself many a time having to call in my car to park on a residential street (not in my zone parking area) because depending on when I get home in the evening all the spots are taken or people have not parked in a way that allows for all space to be utilized.

In a general statement, I really worry about my future in Oak Park. I absolutely LOVE living here, and I feel like I’m a person who does her part to add value to this community. But I worry that with the growth and expansion, I’m also going to be one of the first people to be pushed out of a community I can no longer afford. I do not make a lot of money, but I’m pretty sure I fall into that category of “well, you make too much to get assistance”.

Thank you for your time in reading these comments and considering the concerns. I really hope that if a parking pilot is implemented in 2018, that it addresses the true parking issues that we currently have and it does not make unneccesary and punishing changes to residents who pay for parking and call Oak Park home.

Submitted by Bruce DeViller on

After attending the 8:00 PM meeting I did not come away with as much info as I expected. The consultant sped through the presentation, which I know was intended to allow as much time for feedback. But it was difficult to offer informed feedback with such little information. And with no time-limit enforcement on each person's chance to vent, few had the opportunity to ask for greater details.

It wasn't clear how the odd/even option creates more spaces (if that was the message). On the surface it would seem that such a plan would diminish available spaces by at least half.

The 72-hour option seems to mean that permit holders would need to frequently jockey their vehicles, which somehow would make room for other vehicles. To where are permit holders moving their vehicles if not to another space within the permitted area? This option adds a lot of "busy work" to residents who don't move their vehicle almost everyday (like many did in past days of traditional M-F, 9-5 jobs). Today many residents require a vehicle even if that requirement does not involve driving it every day. (e.g., telecommuters, part-timers, "gig economy" workers)

The same is true with the 3-hour limit. If I don't drive to work everyday, am I moving my car two or more times in a single day just to avoid ticketing? Or, what if I get home @ 5:30 pm, and the permit hours don't begin until 9:00 pm? Am I at risk of citation from 8:30 - 9:00? The benefits of an expensive permit seems greatly diminished.

I understand and agree that the current rules and regs are complex and complicated, and we would all prefer better solutions. I don't know that these proposed options are the best options.

(Less complicated than this problem is knowing that Oak Park is a village and not a city. The presentation materials shared with villagers should reflect that knowledge, and help the esteemed consultant avoid being tagged as a carpetbagger.)

Submitted by MJohnson on

I have been in Oak Park for over 25 years but recently moved into apartments near Mills Park on Pleasant (between Marion and Home). It has been extremely frustrating finding a place to park when I arrive home late evenings. I do not understand the many restrictions when there are several places to park right outside my building...but it is not for "overnight parking". I find it quite confusing and frankly do not understand the restrictions. I live on a street with the new signage---don't get how it is legal to park in back of the sign, but you get a ticket if your car is just in front of the same sign. Huh??

My suggestion is to simply eliminate the overnight ban. Since this IS a pilot program...try something totally different (NOT the odd/even street musical chairs). Of course if the pilot program is not successful---try your PlanB. To simply move cars to different sides of the street is not very innovative and not sure why something that simplistic needs to Pilot.

My bigger concern when parking late at night is safety. I am a single female and walking a few blocks in the dark I think is more dangerous for OP residents than some cars on the street. I would not mind paying more for my vehicle sticker if I am able to park closer to my residence.

Thank you for this opportunity to share ideas on this matter.

Submitted by Angel on

I would rather do the 72-hour proposal or keep it as it is right now. With the new signs & how they have it set up in my area (near Washington & Clinton) finally works better than in prior years. Anything is better than what it was. But the even/odd will not & does not work.

Submitted by Kristen on

As a resident of Oak Park for the last seven years, parking has been a constant headache. I feel that I pay a lot of money, but I do not know what I am 'getting' for that money. I walk a block or two to get to my lot from my house and other non-permit cars park in my lot constantly with seemingly no or little repercussion.

If the Village does not care who parks in the lot, then why am I paying $215 a quarter? If they do care, then signs need to be clear, and tickets should be issued out of respect for the residents. (To be clear, there is TONS of non-resident parking by my lot. I am not trying to sound territorial, but, again, I am paying for this 'privilege'. I would park in the non-resident parking, but I cannot leave my car there overnight.)

I am hopeful that the Village is requesting these comments, and I am thankful for the conversation. I trust they will do what is best to respect the residents, our guests, and the mission of beloved Village.

Submitted by Knelson on

If the zones are opened up to a wider area, then anyone within the zone with a sticker can park on the streets by the el stops. This is going to be a new nightmare for those folks close to the commuter lines with parking as well as increased traffic-especially if the owner of the parking pass can easily change the license plate associated with it. It will be much worse on the weekends too, etc. Someone suggested opening up the metered spots to all day. That makes sense plus encourage the garages close by.

Submitted by Dawn on

If it comes down to the odd/even days or 72-hour approach, I vote keep what we have. Those are the only two choices? You can do better!!

We keep paying for these parking studies and it only gets more expensive, restrictive and complicated for those of us who don't have garages or driveways. Stop penalizing us.

My first choice is to eliminate the overnight parking ban. Second, don't make us move our cars continually. Think about how you'd feel if you had to do that. That's right, give up your garage or driveway and do what I have to do by parking on the street. I already fight for parking as it is.

I've lived in the village nearly 20 years and this is the third time I've been asked to submit my opinions and every time, it's the same old story. Those of us who live in multi-tenant buildings are paying out the nose for the "privilege" of parking on the street and ask to eliminate the overnight bans and the homeowners who have garages and driveways win. The overnight ban stays. I'm paying nearly $700 a year for the "privilege" of parking on my street and it's a total hassle. I already have to move my car twice a week for so-called street cleaning that never happens. A week ago, there were so many leaves piled up, I finally threw them out in the middle of the street to force cleaning. Ding! It worked.

Third, make enforcement consistent and stop giving exceptions to people at random. There are three people who live in my building in the Y9/A6 zone that each drives his/her own car and park without restrictions 24/7 on the A6 "resident" side of the street and at least one of the three does not have any permits. I can't park there 24/7. So why is it that you're making exceptions like this? In other words, you're allowing a couple of multi-tenant people to park in the "residential" zone around-the-clock 365 days a year. I'd sure love to be able to do that. That's a pretty sweet deal. Jennifer is aware -- I've spoken to her about it. Still, nothing changes.

Meanwhile, the parking fees increase $5 each quarter consistently. So next quarter, I'll be paying even more while the neighbors who park on the A6 side day and day out pay nothing -- and don't get tickets.

Fourth: Since you're not cleaning our street regularly (I often work from home, so I know you're not), adjust your schedule and stop making us move for no reason. Stop with the pretense of cleaning.

Bottom line: If you continue to make it more difficult and expensive for me to park, I will move elsewhere. Adding an odd/even rule or 72-hour rule fits that description. You're literally driving people away.

Submitted by Stephanie on

Both of the proposed ideas sound like they will be worse than the current situation. The odd/even plan seems to eliminate MORE spaces. How is that even considered an option? The 72 hour plan sounds completely ineffective as someone can just move their car to another space nearby for another 72 hours. How can either of these ideas even be considered as options? They're both terrible.

I live near Mills Park and it's insane that you can't park on Pleasant Street overnight. Why? Why do I pay so much money to walk blocks back to my apartment late at night (if I can find a space, that is), only to see the street in front of my building is completely empty! Why won't the city prioritize the safety of its residents by opening up parking on that street, or any of the other streets where parking is currently banned?

I find it very hard to believe these two options are the best that the city can provide as solutions to this problem.

When will a decision be made about these programs? My lease is up in the spring and if we have to do either one of these pilot programs, I'm moving out of Oak Park.

Submitted by JC on

I am in a single family home on a residential street that typically is filled with parking from non-residents during the day (hospital is just a block away). It doesn't really bother me since we park in our garage. What I like about our current parking rules is that when we have folks over for dinner, Thanksgiving, Christmas, etc., they have plenty of street parking without having to worry about moving the car. With the proposed parking rules, they can only park for two hours. And then where would they go? So they have to run out of Thanksgiving dinner to park on another street? Totally doesn't make sense.

By the way, your "weekly" leaf pickup does not occur on a weekly basis.

Submitted by Ken Munz on

2 hour restrictions for parking will create problems for the residents who have guests visiting. I am against it or at least make it M-F and not on weekends.

Submitted by JPerez on

I moved to Oak Park nearly 5 years ago and wholeheartedly regret my decision because of the ridiculous parking situation. I've paid thousands of dollars to park on a main street near my home. I've had 3 cars hit (1 totaled) while parked on this main street, so you can tack on the cost of repairs and a new car to that. This pilot only serves to further complicate a system that is already too complicated and wholly unnecessary (if the overnight parking ban is truly not about crime prevention, as another commenter mentions).

Submitted by MJohnson on

We all know that the parking ban will be relaxed during the Thanksgiving holiday---why not see how it works with no ban as Oak Parkers can simply park their cars as needed!
Since your meeting is just after the holiday, assess the street during the ban hours and let's see if mayhem exists. I know it is only for a few days, but why not utilize this 4day weekend as a 'pilot' to see if removing the ban makes a big difference on the street.
I know it's not "The Purge" but hey...let's see if we can survive without a ban for four days! ;-)

Submitted by Cheryl on

After seeing both proposals for parking, I regret my decision on purchasing a condo in Oak Park. I have been a resident for the past few years and have been hunting for a new town to live in due to all this parking non-sense. We live in a household of 2 working people that each need a car. Sometimes you get sick or work from home. I really do not think either plan is condusive to this. We pay enough money to park our cars on the street without these weird parking plans. Now we are going to add confusion to the mix? I thought the goal was to lessen confusion of parking, not make it more complicated and frustrating.

Do the proposers of the two new parking ideas actually park their cars in Oak Park on the street? Both ideas sound awful and very unpractical. The odd/even plan only allows 1 permit per household. If this gets implemented, I believe many people will move out of oak park if they are a 2 household working family. It isn't feasible. Plus moving your car everyday sounds horribly tiresome. The 72 hour plan how will anyone be able to monitor if people are actually moving their car? It seems hard to enforce, so what is the point? If I got a ticket for having my car in the same spot for 72 hours, I would contest it and say I moved it and it happened to fall on the same spot.

Sounds like Barry introduced a simpler idea to the village. Maybe the village should consider taking a step back and listen to their residents who actually park their cars on the street to see how it would change their day-to-day lives.

I hope these comments are actually read and taken into consideration by the proposers.

Submitted by Mareczku on

Barry Jung has the best idea yet. It is simple and easy to understand. Also cleaning street doesn't happen every week Tuesday/Wednesday . I would say ones or twice a month is OK. Many families with kid or kids have two cars and prefer to park as close as possible to their home or apartment but school events are nightmare durning school year. I got tickets for not parking in my zone , but I parked in my zone next to the sign or a few meters behind sign. I am not in favor of proposal and PILOT program - badly done . Barry Jung has the best idea yet.

Submitted by C. May on

We live on a quiet one way residential street that’s half houses, half multi family building and inexplicably have 2 hour parking all the time even though parking is not particularly highly in demand. Then I have a friend on the other side of town who has no parking from 8-10 on her entire street and for several blocks on either side which means no one can visit her at all between 8-10. But why? We all know the current rules are random and confusing. Even/odd and 72 hour plans will be more of the same. The comments on these proposals are overwhelmingly against either of these new pilot ideas. Just because you paid someone to come up with them doesn’t mean you HAVE to try them. They’re just more of the same. Since it’s a pilot program, try something truly revolutionary and simplify the whole thing to one permit sticker as Barry Jung suggested. It would be less of headache for residents AND the village!

Submitted by L. Larsen on

I attended the meeting on 11/9 and also have attended many a transportation meeting or other meetings to express my opinion on the parking. And my feeling is no matter what we say on here or at meetings it will just fall on deaf ears. If we live in multi unit buildings or condos then we are 2nd class citizens to anyone in a house even though all buildings pay property taxes in Oak Park, yet the people in houses who typically have garages get to determine who, how and when everyone else parks on the street. There is no "safety" issue for cars being parked on the street. The safety issues lies in having to walk blocks from you car to your house in the dark. The two recommendations are both jokes. Neither will help it just will cause more confusion. I agree with Barry Jung's ideas. We pay a premium to park on the street in Oak Park and for a lot of us its a giant hassle especially when you come home to no spot and no one enforcing it. I also hate having to call the police all the time to tell them to ticket in the area that I park as this still does not open up a parking space to me. And forget when downtown oak park is having an event because either you can't move your car all weekend or come home till the event is over because NO ONE reads the signs and just park in all the permit areas. All downtown events should be using the garages not allowing people to take our parking on the street. Same with the YMCA, they need to tell members to park in their lot or at meters not in the permit areas. The recommendation needs to be to simplify the parking not make it more complex for the residents of the community. The overnight parking ban needs to go.

Submitted by Encourage Civility on

1) Any new parking 'solution' that doesn't generate more permitted spaces is a failure. In addition to meeting demand, more permitted spaces are needed to cover the expense of new signage, consultant fees, and enforcement. Someone with line-of-sight to the finances needs to determine the minimum number of new spaces needed to break-even within 1-3 years (without adding cost per vehicle).

2) Less people would drive (or need parking) if Pace bus connections were more frequent and reliable. The buses bunch up and are delayed during afternoon rush hour; it only takes me only 20 minutes to get in from the Medical District by train, and then the Pace bus is ~45 minutes away in Oak Park - RIDICULOUS. If we can do a better job of connecting people to-and-from the THREE rail lines that cross Oak Park we can significantly reduce our driving/parking dependency. For the few times a month where a car would be absolutely necessary, there are zip cars and uber/lyft. This won't work for everyone, but some cars can be eliminated.

3) Meters and non-permitted-street-parking near rail lines should not be extended to all day - we need to encourage car-to-rail commuters to use (pay) our village parking lots and garages, like the one near the Oak Park Green Line stop. Our tax dollars continue to pay for these structures whether or not they are used. Moving commuters to the garages also improves residents' ability to find parking in our permitted zones.


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