City officials clarify parking options for elongated vehicles in downtown

ByShannon J. Cortes

Jul 25, 2022

CITY OFFICIALS CLARIFY PARKING OPTIONS

FOR LONG VEHICLES IN CITY CENTER

** Drivers may be cited for blocking the traffic lane

and parking too far from the sidewalk

RAPID CITY, SD—City officials are responding to recent public concerns about potential traffic impacts from large vehicles parked downtown. The concerns relate to extended cab vehicles such as pickup trucks overhanging into traffic lanes when parked along St. Joseph Street and Main Street.

City officials are encouraging drivers who park large vehicles in the affected area to park on a side street to avoid impacting or blocking traffic. The side streets run north-south and have only two lanes, which can accommodate extended cab vehicles without impeding traffic.

“This is ranch country and we have a significant number of large stretch vehicles parking downtown every day,” said Anna Gilligan, the city’s parking operations manager. “It’s not uncommon for these large vehicles to extend into the travel lane, which can cause problems in traffic. Drivers are concerned when they encounter parked vehicles that extend into the lane of traffic.

According to municipal code 10.40.040, a vehicle must be parked entirely within the parking space designated by painted lines, must point in the direction of travel, and must park within 12 inches of the sidewalk. Vehicles that extend into the traffic lane are ticketed.

Gilligan said violations in this case are being addressed quickly in an effort to mitigate the security risk. Officers will attempt to contact the registered owner of the vehicle, but if contact cannot be made, the vehicle will be towed at the owner’s expense.

Since Jan. 1, Gilligan said his parking enforcement team has written about a dozen citations for vehicles obstructing traffic. Rapid City Police have received more than half a dozen complaints or service calls from the public about parked vehicles partially obstructing the lane of travel. More complaints and concerns are voiced by the public during the summer months.

To report safety hazards, such as vehicles obstructing traffic, call the Rapid City Police Department non-emergency line at 605-394-4131. For general downtown parking issues, contact the City’s Parking Enforcement Division at 605-394-6098.