More metered parking spots coming to Clearwater Beach - FOX 13 News

More metered parking spots coming to Clearwater Beach

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CLEARWATER BEACH (FOX 13) -

The Clearwater City Council will get a full report on Clearwater Beach parking next week, but here are some nuggets:

There are plans to add 220 public spaces to the existing inventory of 1,170 spaces available to the public.

That is 18 percent more, although the spaces may or may not be considered "new."

"Those were spaces that were currently on the street where people may have been parking in the past, but they weren't metered and they weren't marked," spokesperson Joelle Castelli explained. "So now they're going to be designated spaces with meters."

Most street parking will be $1.25 an hour, ranging up to $3 an hour in the two most popular parking lots. Annual permits for residents will cost a proposed $75.

Annual permits at the Clearwater Marina will increase to $200, while the price of a day pass at the marina will rise from the current $4 to $6.

A new permit program will offer a limited number of public spaces to motels that currently do not have enough spaces on their properties.

There are also plans to install new credit card-friendly parking meters, and offer pay-by-cellphone technology.

But parking is still expected to be challenging on one of the nation's most popular beaches. Castelli claims the increased revenue provides more than visitor landing zones.

"We pay for 365 days of lifeguards, and we pay for 365 days of beach raking out of the parking fund," she said.

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