Parking meters installed near campus

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    The City of Fort Worth has installed new multi-spaced parking meters on Bellaire Drive, across from Palko Hall and also on West Bowie Street.

    Mark Russell, a neighborhood patrol officer with the Fort Worth Police Department, said a single meter feeds four spots that are labeled with a corresponding letter on the curb. The four spots are divided into two white tees that vehicles should be parked inside.

    Directions labeled on the meter call to select a spot, with each letter corresponding with a spot number. Letter A would correspond with spot one, B with two, C with three and D with four. After selecting a spot, quarters may be deposited into the meter, Russell said.

    Amy Casas, a City of Fort Worth communications officer, wrote in an e-mail that the meters were installed Sept. 3, but officers did not start writing citations until Sept. 14. The meters were installed because Bellaire Drive and West Bowie Street were deemed high-demand areas, she wrote.

    “It requires frequent turnover to facilitate parking for everyone that needs access to the buildings and facilities in that vicinity,” Casas wrote. “The meters help keep traffic moving throughout the day ensuring more people are able to park along West Bowie Street.”

    Russell said the meters will be in full effect from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday to Friday. Parking will be free on weekends and after 6 p.m. on weekdays.

    “The only people that can park there for free are those who have disabled veterans stickers or if you have a handicapped plate or sticker,” Russell said. “Even the sergeant was saying he has his personal vehicle over here and he has to pay to park here.”

    According to the City of Fort Worth Web site, the two-hour meters will cost $1 per hour. Students are required to move their vehicles after the two-hour time limit expires due to a 2005 City Council ban on meter feeding.

    Russell said “No officer likes having to write (parking meter) citation … if we receive a parking complaint we have to come out here and issue a citation. I hate doing it.”

    Price Orwosky, a junior communications studies and human relations major, said he felt the new meters would only make students more angry about the parking situation on and around campus.

    “There’s already nowhere to park as it is,” Orwosky said. “It just makes me mad that the few free spots that were there for (students) are gone. Every time I go to class I feel like I’m parking in New York City or something.”

    There is a $17 meter fine for going over the time limit or not paying to park. The fine will increase if the ticket is not paid within 30 days, Russell said.

    To report a malfunctioning meter call the Fort Worth Transportation and Public Works Department customer service line at 817-392-8100.