FAQs on Overnight Parking
In April, the Mt. Lebanon Commission introduced an ordinance that would revise the rules for on-street overnight parking. A public hearing will be held on Tuesday, May 8, at 8 p.m. in the Commission Chamber. Here are some answers to frequently asked questions. The proposed ordinance appears at the end of this document.
Why does Mt. Lebanon prohibit on-street parking between 2 a.m. and 6 a.m.? This prohibition, which has been in effect for decades, addresses both public safety and public works concerns. With no cars on the street at night, it is easier for patrol officers to determine if a parked vehicle might pose a threat to residents. Streets free of parked cars at night also allow fire, police and medical rescue teams to respond more quickly. If it snows, public works is able to plow during the night without damaging or blocking in vehicles, ensuring everyone can get to work or school in the morning.
Why is a change needed? Overnight parking is intended to be used infrequently and for a good reason—out of town company, for example, or the need for a temporary overnight guest. Since the municipality permitted the option of online requests several years ago, the number of nightly requests has jumped from 60 per night to more than 300 per night. This is time-consuming for patrol officers, who need to compare the license plate of each car on the street against a 10-page list that is generated each night. The municipality has been receiving regular complaints that on-street overnight parking creates congestion that leads to missed garbage or leaf pickup and causes access problems for public safety and public works vehicles.
Why have requests increased so dramatically? Research has shown that many residents with access to free or reasonably priced parking where they live or who are eligible to purchase overnight permits in convenient municipal lots, garages and zones are abusing the system. Rather than utilizing the off-street options available to them, these residents are making requests on a nightly basis to park their cars on the street.
If residents have several cars, do not have garages or have very short driveway, what are they expected to do? Residents may purchase affordable parking passes in several municipal surface lots and zones, as well as in the north and south parking garages. Day, 24-hour and night permits are available. A night permit costs $38 a month for a lot and
$40 for a garage. For further information, go to http://www.mtlebanon.org/2056/Permits or call 412-343-3705.
What will the new ordinance mandate? The new ordinance will permit three overnight parking passes per year per license plate. Residents will make requests online as usual at www.mtlebanon.org, click on MyLebo. Software is currently being developed to track requests. If a license plate has exceeded its three permitted passes for the year, the request will not be approved. If a special situation arises where a resident needs more than the three permitted nights (such as a construction project), the resident may call a daytime number to request additional temporary overnight parking. The municipal manager (or the manager’s designee) will review the request to determine if it meets the standards for good cause shown in the ordinance. As always, there will be no overnight on-street parking permitted if there is an inch or more of snow.
What will happen if a car without a permit parks on the street overnight? A police officer will issue a traffic citation. The cost of the ticket is $20, the same as it is now.
What if residents cannot access their garages because of street repair and or has an extenuating circumstance such as a dumpster in the driveway during a construction project. In the case of infrastructure repair, an exception would automatically be made, and the letter explaining the project would state that. Other requests for exceptions would be handled on an individual basis.
Prepared by the Mt. Lebanon Public Information Office, March 2018. Updated May 2018