It has been nearly one month since the City of Malden announced changes to its Winter Parking Regulations and the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. In past years, Winter Parking Regulations have normally begun on November 1st, causing residents city wide to scramble for parking as parking inventory is cut almost in half. This year, a change was instituted that Winter Parking Regulations would not go into effect until the “first winter event” that requires the full deployment of our DPW resources.
Additionally, one other notable change was the removal of overnight parking restrictions which required certain streets to be free of vehicles between the hours of 12 AM and 7 AM every night during the winter regardless of weather. More than 100 streets were affected and now this restriction is no longer in place.
“We simply applied a common-sense approach to come up with a plan that would balance the needs of our residents with the challenges of keeping our streets navigable during the winter months,” said Director of Parking Ron Hogan. “In past years, we would have no choice but to enforce Winter Parking Regulations after November 1st, even if as last year the first winter storm didn’t arrive until after January 1st.”
These changes were largely the result of feedback from residents and businesses who felt that enforcing parking restrictions beginning on a certain date did not make sense when historically, most days in the month of November and often December are without snow and ice. Further, many of the rules put in place decades ago are outdated as they served a time when mass communication was extremely difficult. With the implementation of CodeRED, Social Media, Web and other technology, communicating the need for parking changes due to weather is now instant and on demand using the many communication methods at our disposal.
Of course, mother nature decided to test us just a bit with the first snow of this season on November 15th. Though enough snow fell requiring the deployment of some DPW equipment, it was decided that with subsequent rain and warmer temperatures, it did not require the City to enact the Winter Parking Regulations just yet. This decision was quickly communicated to residents via Malden’s website and social media. The communication has been well-received, with many residents extremely pleased at not having to alter their parking habits just yet.
“We have thousands of residents who rely upon on street parking and we feel that this change is a step in the right direction,” said Mayor Gary Christenson. “Our goal is to reduce the strain placed on residents without any detrimental impact on our ability to handle keeping our streets safe and passable. We will continue to review our Winter Parking Regulations each year to look for ways in which we can better accommodate our residents and businesses.”
When the time comes to enact Winter Parking Regulations, it will be communicated through various methods of electronic communication including a message through the City-wide CodeRED alert system. For complete information on this topic and all things related, visit the Winter Weather Central page at www.cityofmalden.org/snow. There you may sign up for communication services as well as other helpful information about the winter weather season in the City of Malden. You may also contact our 311 line to be signed up for these services. The Parking Department is also actively passing out winter parking cards to vehicles parked on the street. Please contact the Parking Department at 781 397-7196 for further questions.