Asbury Park adds dozens of new pay-to-park spaces

Asbury Park recently turned 64 parking spaces along Fifth and Sunset avenues into paid parking spots.
The spaces are just a few blocks from the beach near Sunset Lake. Asbury Park’s transportation manager says that the idea is to increase the turnover rate and parking availability in the area.
“This is one of the highest demand in the entire city…this area,” says manager Michael Manzella.
The spaces include areas for residential permit parking.  New parking signs also line the avenues. The cost to park is $1 an hour on weekdays and $2 an hour on weekends.
“We are doing the best we can to manage the limited parking availability we have,” Manzella says. “We have to meter parking spaces to get that turnover."
Some people who visited Asbury Park tell News 12 New Jersey that they think the changes are just to get money for the city. Asbury Park netted more than $4.5 million in parking revenue in 2016, according to officials.
“I think it's a waste of money because you have to pay someone to ticket and now people are going to waste their time paying for the tickets. They should just collect taxes,” Montclair resident Mike Wiesman says.
But some Asbury Park residents say that they are happy with the new parking rules. Dave Lockhart lives next to the spaces, and says that this will help residents find parking - even those who already purchased permits.
“When we bought here, no one wanted to live here,” he says. “If you want your real estate value to go up, you have to accept popularity and this is the way to do that."
Strict parking enforcement of the new paid spaces is expected to begin within the next two weeks.
Manzella says that there are no plans to add more paid parking spaces through the end of this year.