Dave Summers

Rate to Park on Oceanside Shore Nearly Doubles

Expect to pay parking rates more like Del Mar and Laguna Beach starting this June in Oceanside. City Council voted to raise rates at the meters from $1 an hour to $1.50 per hour.

In Oceanside, all-day beachfront parking will almost double and visitors will find fewer spaces.

The Oceansice City Council voted unanimously Wednesday to up the rates at meters and pay lots.

There are added restrictions and costs to overnight parking for campers and trailers as well.

Some visitors have been paying just $1 an hour for prime spots in front of the Oceanside Pier for the last six years.

With this new increase, Oceanside parking will jump from the low end for coastal communities to rates drivers may experience in communities like Del Mar and Laguna Beach.

Campers and trailers parked overnight must pay a $20 permit fee.

"One beautiful thing a city can do is make lots of inexpensive parking for its citizens and people come to visit," said Oceanside resident Abraham Levin.

The increase seemed a tall order to some in the gallery. One resident, Jimmy Knott, said there should be exceptions in a military town.

The new rates start in June.

Meters jump from $1 an hour to $1.50. During peak season, May through September, surface lots go from $2 per hour to $4. All-day parking currently at $8 will increase to $15.

"Definitely looking for a better bargain,” Vista resident Jim Foy said.

There is a better bargain just three blocks from the beach. You can park at the Oceanside Transit center for free.

The cost of beach and pier maintenance is driving up the prices. New hotel construction is squeezing out the number of available spaces.

Nobody wants to pay more, but four-time-a-week visitor Marc Robinson said it's worth it.

“I would rather have the convenience the driving around the block a couple times and find something,” Oceanside resident Marc Robinson said.

The city pockets an extra $900,000 from the rate increase.

Council got full support from the downtown business association which expects the money will pay for a cleaner beachfront, sidewalks and streets.

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