The Washington Post

Changes to D.C. visitor parking passes are nixed

Use your visitor parking pass properly lest you incur the wrath of the city’s ticket-writing force. (Amanda Voisard/The Washington Post)

About a month ago, neighborhood activists in the city’s densest neighborhoods issued a civic cry of bloody murder after the District Department of Transportation announced that it was reworking its visitor parking pass program.

The new plan — which would allow households on any block requiring residential parking permits to request a free pass — threatened to overwhelm parking-scarce neighborhoods with outside parkers, they said. Under the current system, all households on permit blocks automatically mailed a free pass, except in some particularly parking-scarce neighborhoods such as Dupont Circle and Georgetown.

The agency showed no sign of backing down, but now lawmakers have: On Tuesday, the plans were nixed by the D.C. Council, which voted unanimously to scrap the new system and keep the status quo until at least December.

The bill, which was introduced by Muriel Bowser (D-Ward 4) and Mary M. Cheh (D-Ward 3) and will be valid for 90 days upon receiving Mayor Vincent C. Gray’s signature, allows existing permit holders to continue to use their passes even after the Sept. 30 expiration date.

Reggie Sanders, a spokesman for the transportation department, said the agency will be sending out a new batch of parking passes to the areas that have gotten them in the past. He was uncertain when the new passes might be printed and sent, but said residents are free to use their old passes until then.

“What the legislation asks us to do, that’s what we’re going to do,” he said.

Sanders said the agency has no plans “at the present time” to go back to the drawing board to refine the system — perhaps by incorporating a citywide system of paid coupon books, which was an option discussed at some length in a “parking summit” and series of community meetings sponsored by the agency.

Mike DeBonis covers Congress and national politics for The Washington Post. He previously covered D.C. politics and government from 2007 to 2015.



Success! Check your inbox for details. You might also like:

Please enter a valid email address

See all newsletters

Show Comments
Most Read



Success! Check your inbox for details.

See all newsletters

Your Three. Videos curated for you.
Play Videos
How to make Sean Brock's 'Heritage' cornbread
New limbs for Pakistani soldiers
The signature dish of Charleston, S.C.
Play Videos
Why seasonal allergies make you miserable
John Lewis, 'Marv the Barb' and the politics of barber shops
What you need to know about filming the police
Play Videos
The Post taste tests Pizza Hut's new hot dog pizza
5 tips for using your thermostat
Michael Bolton's cinematic serenade to Detroit
Play Videos
Full disclosure: 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, 1 ghoul
Pandas, from birth to milk to mom
The signature drink of New Orleans
Next Story
Mike DeBonis · September 20, 2013

To keep reading, please enter your email address.

You’ll also receive from The Washington Post:
  • A free 6-week digital subscription
  • Our daily newsletter in your inbox

Please enter a valid email address

I have read and agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Please indicate agreement.

Thank you.

Check your inbox. We’ve sent an email explaining how to set up an account and activate your free digital subscription.