On Tuesday, January 25th, Burbank City Council held a regularly scheduled meeting.
On the meeting’s agenda was the possible adoption of an ordinance and a resolution altering the existing municipal code and fee schedule. This ordinance and resolution were a result of two years of prior discussion regarding parking management in Burbank.
In May 2019, the city council approved six Parking Management Principles. Deputy City Planner David Kriske, during his report on parking management, characterized the principles as, “high level principles guiding staff how to manage parking in the city.”
“One of the elements of these principles is better management of our lots and parking structures, particularly at the Metrolink Stations,” said Kriske.
Prior to the pandemic, in February 2020, the city council approved a Parking Management Plan for the Downtown Burbank Metrolink Station. This plan ensured that parking would be made available for anyone who needed it and discouraged long time parking in order to, according to Kriske, “minimize abandoned cars [and] folks using the lot for extended periods of time.”
However, in August 2021, the council delayed implementation of this plan due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, which, according to Kriske, resulted in a “low utilization” of parking at the station. The council decided to delay discussions of what to do for six months, which leads us to now.
The Parking Management Plan requires three successive actions taken by the council, which are, according to Kriske, “[amending] the Burbank municipal code to allow for the management of the station under the new parking principles established in 2019…[approving] the actual parking management system and establishing fees for parking… [and procuring] the services of a parking enforcement operator to actually manage the program and conduct enforcement.”
The first of these steps, amending the municipal code to accommodate the six Parking Management Principles, is what the city council was set to deal with during this meeting. As the Deputy City Planner described it, this step would “[modernize] laws for how public parking structures operate in Burbank.”
“[This step] allows council to define future fees in line with council-approved parking management principles… [and] sets the table for implementing parking management in the future,” said Kriske. “We’re not adding any [new] fines or fees…we’re just establishing and translating the existing fees over to the new code.”
Following David Kriske’s presentation, Mayor Jess Talamantes opened the floor for discussion.
“[The ordinance] does good in removing a lot of outdated language in our code and really sets the table… to [put Burbank] in the 21st century and to implement these kind of changes when the [demand for Metro services] does return,” said Councilmember Nick Schultz.
“I think it’s important to let the public know that nothing is really changing [with the passage of this ordinance and resolution],” said Councilmember Sharon Springer, making reference to the fact that this ordinance and resolution do not create any fees or new parking regulations.
The ordinance and resolution were passed 5-0 by the council.
The council will revisit adopting the other two steps of the Parking Management Plan in the Fall of this year, anticipating that the COVID-19 pandemic will be much more contained by then and Metro ridership will subsequently increase.
A video recording of the meeting, along with a copy of the agenda, can be found here.