Winter Parking Ban Begins in Chicago

Sunday, Dec 1, 2013  |  Updated 10:06 AM CDT
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Dozens of people woke up Sunday morning to find that their cars were not where they left them. Susan Carlson reports.

Dozens of people woke up Sunday morning to find that their cars were not where they left them. Susan Carlson reports.

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City Tows 301 Parking Ban Violators

On the first morning of Chicago's annual overnight parking ban, the city towed more than 300 cars. Emily Relerford reports with reaction from drivers picking up their cars from the impound for NBC News at 5 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 1, 2012.

Winter Parking Begins

A parking misstep could cost you a minimum $220 fine and a missing vehicle. Kim Vatis reports.
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Dozens of people woke up Sunday morning to find that their cars were not where they left them.

Chicago's winter parking ban began at 3 a.m. Sunday and was enforced along 107 miles of city streets.The ban will remain in effect between the hours of 3 a.m. and 7 a.m. through April 1, regardless of snow.

The Department of Streets and Sanitation began posting flyers on cars parked on restricted streets last week.

Cars violating the parking ban face a minimum $150 towing fee, a $60 ticket and a storage fee of $20 per day, according to city officials. The storage fee has doubled since last year.

Several people haven fallen victim to the Dec. 1 deadline, including one memorable half-naked man who ran out into the street to try to stop his car from being towed.

And despite the warnings this year, storage lots filled up Sunday morning.

"I’m a student, I go to full-time school, I have two jobs and I don’t have money for this," said resident Crysthal Melendez.

Last year, 301 cars were towed on Dec. 1 for violating the parking ban.

If you have trouble finding a place to park, here's a tip. Spothero.com lets you search for parking spots and compare prices. You can even reserve a spot from your smartphone, so you don't get stuck.

A separate permanent ban on another 500 miles of arterial streets is activated when at least two inches of snow are present to help facilitate the clearing of snow.

Both bans were implemented on designated streets to prevent traffic standstills during major snowstorms in 1967 and 1979.

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