Parking in Los Angeles is notoriously frustrating and confusing. The biggest contributor to the problem? The signs that dictate where drivers can park given the day of the week and the time of day; the length of time parking is allowed; when a driver can stop; and when a car can load or unload passengers. It’s enough to make your head spin, and by the time a driver can actually decipher when and where they can park, they’ve probably used up the parking time allotted for that particular space on that particular day at that particular hour.
Not only are these signs hard to understand to begin with but the city adds more signs for clarity — which is ironic since they often contradict the existing signs and cause more confusion.
The good news is that, according to L.A. Biz, City Council members recently requested that transportation officials test a new, simpler sign. They requested that the new signs display information as simply and as obviously as possible on just one sign.
The proposed sign was designed by a local graphic artist is in a grid-like format which divides parking restrictions by day and time, with colored time blocks to indicate when drivers can and cannot park. The only other issue here is that signs aren’t always easy to read at night, which could be remedied by adding LEDs (light emitting diodes), which are solid, energy efficient light bulbs.
The other problematic part of parking in Los Angeles is that there just isn’t enough of it, which is having a surprising effect on the mass transit system. You would think that fewer parking spaces in the city would lead to an increase in the usage of public transportation, but according to ABC 7, it’s losing 1,500 riders per day on the Red Line alone.
To help remedy the problem, the Los Angeles Metropolitan Transportation Authority is working on expanding parking options for people who want to take public transportation.
“We are engaged in a comprehensive parking study to identify ways that we can better manage the parking demand that we have on the Metro system,” Dave Sotero, a spokesman for the Los Angeles Metropolitan Transportation Authority, told ABC 7.
“We’re going to be looking at ways that we can add more parking where we can. For example, we could restripe some of the parking lots and create additional parking spaces,” Sotero continued. “In other areas, we may be able to add additional parking where we are gonna be doing a joint development.”
Until then, Metro officials are emphasizing the use of bicycles to get to a train stop. As far as the parking signs go, citizens will have to patiently await the results of the test of the new sign, which will take place over the next 45 days.