ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – If you have an eco-friendly car, there’s some bad news coming in the new year for you. The city of Albuquerque will be getting rid of their green vehicle parking permits starting in 2017.
Since 2008, the little parking permit sticker has been allowing drivers with eco-friendly cars to park in metered parking spots for free. However, in four days, those drivers are going to have to start paying up.
“With the adoption of the new parking ordinance in April of this year, we eliminated the green vehicle parking permits,” said Melanie Chapman of the Department of Municipal Development.
The green vehicle parking permit program cost the city roughly $200,000 a year. They say the goal of getting rid of it, is to level the parking field.
“With the development of downtown, and the interest of the business owners to have parking in front of their stores and to create that turnover, we moved forward with the idea of treating all vehicles equally,” said Chapman.
KRQE News 13 spoke to some permit holders who have been using them since they were first introduced and they say, they’re not happy about having their privileges taken away.
“I don’t like that. I liked having the parking permit. It was just another benefit to driving a hybrid car and being energy conscious,” said Jim Maddox.
“I’m good with it, but yeah, it’s kind of a let down too,” said Michael Dennis.
The city says this is the start of attempting to build more parking downtown by reducing that subsidy.
“In the grand scheme of things, it really will help the parking downtown which we’re moving forward,” said Chapman.
People with electric cars will still be able to charge their cars for free at the designated charging stations. Drivers who were issued the parking permits earlier this year will still have until January 1st to take advantage of their permits.