NewsLocal News


Buffalo Common Council rolls back on some of its new parking laws

Posted at 3:15 PM, Jan 08, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-09 09:35:40-05

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — The Buffalo Common Council changed some of the parking laws it just passed on December 26th.

After widespread criticism regarding extended paid parking hours, the Mayor and Common Council have decided to make a few adjustments.
Parking is now free after 5 p.m. and on Saturdays.

However, that is not the case when there are special events in the city. When there is a game a sporting event or concert at the Keybank Center you will have to pay for parking until 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday. This rule will be phased in over time for Sahlen Field, Canalside, and the Theater District.

So what defines an event?

"Signage is going to be the way they know an event. just as we said right now we know people know for the most part that 20,000 people coming to a hockey game is an event. Going to the theatre district it would be a little harder to delineate is it a event or not," Buffalo Parking Commissioner, Kevin Helfer, said.

Canalside events will include much larger concerts and festivals. The commissioner said that something with a few hundred people won't constitute an "event." At Sahlen field, events will most likely be Bison's games and the Wing Festival. The Theater district will be a little tougher. Since there are so many playhouses it will be difficult to determine which show necessitates an event. The commissioner said shows that draw in audiences like Hamilton, will be considered an event. However, for Sahlen Field, Canalside, and the Theater District, those classifications will be determined later in the year.

The new hourly rate of $2 an hour is still in effect.

The city says the best way to pay for parking is with the Buffalo Roam parking application for smartphones. It's free to download. However, if you don't have that, you can pay at a meter or kiosk. The city says it will be adding more kiosks in the coming weeks. What's more, you can now pay for as long as you are willing to park. Goodbye are the days of having to run back to feed the meter. Now you can fill it for up to five hours.

The parking commissioner says it will take about two months before all the old signs are changed to signs with the new amount. For now, when you park follow whatever the nearest sign says.

For more by James Groh, visit his Facebook or Twitter page.