The City of Evanston’s Parking Services Division will implement a variety of changes to parking operations in 2022 aimed at encouraging better use of underutilized parking spaces, providing more flexibility for visitors and employees of local businesses, and supporting parking facility upgrades and the City’s Climate Action and Resilience Plan goals.
The changes, most of which are effective January 2022, include reducing parking rates and extending maximum parking times in designated areas, updating the fee structure at the city’s three downtown parking garages, and making the city’s lakefront parking pilot program year-round.
Reduced rates and extended times In designated locations
To provide workers and visitors with increased flexibility and affordable rates for longer-term parking sessions, the city will reduce parking rates from $2 per hour to 50 cents per hour and extend maximum parking times to 12 hours for select on-street and parking lot spaces.
New locations include:
- Lot 3, 1700 block of Chicago Avenue (east of Main Library)
- Lot 8, 811 Main St.
- Lot 25, 1614 Maple Ave.
- Lot 27, 1621 Oak Ave.
- Lot 68, 700 block of Howard Street
- 600 block of Washington Street
- 800 block of Custer Avenue
- 2500 and 2600 blocks of Prairie Avenue
Many other locations already have rates set at 50 cents per hour. Community members are encouraged to use the Park Evanston mobile app to view rates and conveniently pay for parking throughout the city.
First hour $1 at downtown parking garages
Beginning January 3, there will be a $1 fee for the first hour of parking in the city’s three downtown parking garages. Rates for sessions longer than one hour will remain the same.
Planned garage improvements
Additional revenue generated from the updated parking garage fee structure will support an improved experience for drivers utilizing the city’s downtown garages. Planned garage improvements include elevator upgrades, new security cameras and additional security personnel.
To support the City’s Climate Action and Resilience Plan goals, the city will also be adding additional electric vehicle charging stations at all three parking garages over the course of the year as well as additional bike parking and maintenance stations at locations throughout the city. A new Tesla supercharger station is also being installed at the Maple Avenue parking garage at no cost to the city. The station is expected to be fully operational in January.
The city’s Lakefront Parking Pilot Program, which began in August 2021, has been expanded to a year-round program with reduced rates during off-season months, November through March.
Vehicles without a current-year paid Evanston wheel tax are subject to parking fees on designated streets along the lakefront, with enforcement between 8 a.m. and 9 p.m., seven days a week. Parking rates are set at $3 per hour, April 1 through October 31, and 50 cents per hour, November 1 through March 31. Those parking vehicles registered to an Evanston address with a current-year paid wheel tax do not need to pay for lakefront parking sessions.
The city is placing additional signage in designated lakefront parking areas and will be adding pay stations to new locations. Parking fees will be assessed as pay stations are installed. All stations are anticipated to be installed by April 1.
Free Sunday parking and holiday incentives
Parking will continue to be free on Sundays at downtown parking garages and in parking lots and on-street spaces throughout Evanston (with the exception of lakefront parking).
In addition, through January 2, the city will provide local businesses with two-hour free parking vouchers to distribute to customers to encourage community members to shop local this holiday season. Each voucher card contains a unique code which customers can enter into the Park Evanston mobile app to receive a credit for two hours of free parking. Vouchers do not have to be used on the day of receipt, but must be redeemed by January 2. Vouchers will not allow for parking within a parking garage. This applies for metered on-street or surface lot parking only.