Parks & Rec board weighs input on parking meters at valley parks - Fox 2 News Headlines

Parks & Rec board weighs input on parking meters at valley parks

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The City of Phoenix has announced a plan to place parking meters at several valley mountain parks.

There was a similar idea four years ago that was met with so much resistance that city leaders eventually canned the idea.

On Thursday, hundreds of residents rallied against this latest attempt at a board meeting.

Many people use these mountain parks every day, and the idea is definitely unsettling for them.

There were close to 70 people who spoke at the meeting, and hundreds more wrote the board against the idea.

"This is giving the middle finger salute to the citizens by the City of Phoenix," said one woman.

Passionate opposition to potential parking meters at three Phoenix Mountain Parks, a long line of residents spoke out against the idea during the Parks & Recreation Board meeting.

"Why are we always being nickeled and dimed, I don't think it's fair, it's a perfect way to destroy our sense of community in this city," said another citizen.

Families say potential meters could cost them hundreds if not thousands of dollars a year.

FOX 10 asked one resident how much it would cost her family over a year; "Looking at myself, and three children, which utilize the park, well over $1500 a year," said Tonya Norwood.

For the last few weeks city councilman, Sal Diccicio has rallied colleagues to fight against the meters. 

The board says parking meters are not an official recommendation, but one of many ideas being floated to address a shrinking budget and traffic issues at Pima Canyon, Echo Canyon, and Piestewa Peak.

Still residents say charging for parking to use the trails would take Phoenix down the wrong path. 

"This great group of people will fight to make sure no parking meter will be installed," said Timothy Sierakowsky.

The board says they will continue to receive public input. In the fall, they will release their findings and recommendations which could include the parking meters.

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