Downtown Kansas City motorists beware.
The city is beefing up downtown parking enforcement. Anyone blocking streetcar track construction or parking within 8 feet of streetcar tracks, streetcar stations or bus stops can be towed and fined as much as $500.
“We want to help motorists learn how parking will be affected by the streetcar now to mitigate potential parking issues when it starts operating,” Councilman Russ Johnson said in a city news release.
Streetcar construction and testing on the downtown route, between River Market and Union Station, are expected to last until late next year.
Cars that block streetcars once the system begins operating will be dealt with promptly, the city says. The City Council has just approved several traffic ordinances to strengthen enforcement, minimize disruptions, keep roads accessible and deal with increased construction and business activity downtown.
Recently approved regulations limit the time drivers can park in passenger and property loading zones and require drivers to use emergency flashers while loading and unloading. Drivers are required to leave most passenger loading zones within 10 minutes, and some zones are limited to three minutes. People loading or unloading property must complete the task within 30 minutes.
Police enforcement of the new regulations begins immediately. Motorists can be ticketed and towed for parking in no parking zones or blocking lanes of traffic.