Downtown Fullerton (DTF) and the South of Commonwealth (SOCO) District is known for its vibrant nightlife. The SOCO District was incorporated into DTF in the mid 2000’s and is a popular spot for Orange County night life.
On Thursday, July 18, 2019 the city of Fullerton implemented the pilot paid parking program. The city council will vote on keeping or dismantling the program the week of Dec. 22, 2019.
The majority of night owls who come to Downtown Fullerton, drive or carpool and most likely park their vehicles where the paid parking areas are located.
Alberto Martinez, a regular in Downtown Fullerton, expressed his concern how parking used to be free and people should not have to pay for public parking.
There are two options for patrons to pay for parking. The first method is when the individual parks their vehicle in numbered parking slot they need to walk up to the kiosk and enter their license plate number,. The kiosk takes credit card, no cash is accepted. The city’s parking webpage shows a map of all available kiosks.
The second, is with the “ParkMobile” app, which can be downloaded for free at Google Play or the Apple Store. When using the app for the first time, users must create an account. Once the account is created, enter the license plate number, country, state, and a nickname. The final phase is entering the payment. The app allows payment with a debit or credit card, Pay Pal, Master Card Express and Chase Pay. The app will keep a record of past activity on the account.
The license plate information gathered from the kiosk and app is transferred to the private parking company’s employees who monitor and enforce the paid parking lots.
According to City of Fullerton Parking Officials, “the revenue is designated for reinvestment into the operations of the Downtown, generally including maintenance, enforcement, safety and security, and including funding for the preparation of an Assessment Engineer’s Report to inform consideration of the formation of a Business Improvement District and/or other type of landscape, lighting or Maintenance District.”
The current Downtown Fullerton paid parking program is in a 24 week trial. The last two months of this trail fall during the holidays. The Christmas season has universally been a profitable period for retailer and attracts more people to Fullerton. The larger volume of vehicles whose owners have to pay the parking fee will result in a boost in revenue for the paid parking program.
This extra revenue can be the deciding factor that pushes this experimental parking project into permanency.