No more free Saturday parking during holidays in Philadelphia

City officials say the practice was actually counter-productive.
PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- The City of Philadelphia is putting an end to a popular holiday perk.

Parking will no longer be free on Saturdays between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day.

The city-wide free meter parking was created to attract holiday shoppers to more small businesses.

However, according to the city, research showed this was counter-productive, with many people just leaving their cars parked in the spots all day long.

After analyzing parking trends, researching best practices, and talking to businesses, the City's Office of Transportation, Infrastructure and Sustainability (OTIS) determined that the policy of relaxed enforcement is counter-productive.

According to research from the City's Office of Transportation, Infrastructure and Sustainability:

"The best practice for on-street parking management says that there should be one or two open spots on every block. This allows residents to find a spot and patronize businesses without excessive circling the block.

Similar programs, such as free parking on Wednesdays or First-Fridays were discontinued in the past without negative impacts.

Free parking on Saturdays in December encouraged all-day on-street parking while discouraging the turnover that is needed for customers to find a spot and start shopping.

The City will continue to work with the PPA and our businesses to ensure the best accessibility to our incredible shopping districts."

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