New plan could help ease downtown San Diego parking crunch -- at a cost

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - San Diegans pay a lot of money fighting for parking spots downtown, but a new plan could help ease the crunch in the Cortez Hill area.

Civic San Diego is considering a plan to scrap parallel parking in the neighborhood's southeast section because cars take up too much curb space. It would then add 90-degree strips to create more parking.

Civic San Diego said the plan would add 45 more downtown parking spots.

"It's always tough finding a place to park," said Duane Taylor, who comes to Cortez Hill to visit his daughter. "You have to sometimes cruise around the block to find an empty space."

The plan does come with a catch, however. The city would add 30 new parking meters to Cortez Hill, generating $45,000 a year.

"I guess they have to get it somehow, but you pay out the nose for parking all over San Diego," Taylor said.

Ben Verdugo, who is overseeing the project, said most of the meters will charge the market rate of $1.25 an hour. Some meters will be geared toward commuters, offering 50 cents an hour with a nine-hour limit.

Civic San Diego's board will consider the plan at its meeting Thursday. If they endorse it, the plan would go to the city's traffic and engineering to make sure it works.

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