Residents of a residential pocket in Chevy Chase near Bethesda can rest easy—they won't be required to pay at parking meters in order to park in their neighborhood, Bethesda Now reported.
Residents of Offutt Lane and Chevy Chase Drive were shocked to see parking meters being installed in their neighborhood last week, Bethesda Now reported.
The parking meters had been in the budget for fiscal year 2013, but some residents said they hadn't heard anything about it. "Our neighborhood is getting taken away from us,” Debrah Shaver—who is on the board of the Bradley House Condominium Association—said, Bethesda Now reported. "They’re going to subsidize their budget off of the people who are living in the neighborhood."
But by the end of last week, the meter installation had been halted, and a residential parking permit program was under consideration, Bethesda Now added. County Spokeswoman Esther Bowring told Bethesda Now that the meters were not intended to generate revenue, but were meant to keep commuters and downtown shoppers from parking free-of-charge in the neighborhood.
And on Monday, Montgomery County Council President Roger Berliner took some of the blame for the situation:
“The meter situation was not handled particularly well,” Berliner said. “I’m not clean in respect to this. Our Council approved this, our staff received this from DOT and our [Transportation] Committee recommended it. I’m not blameless in this. That’s why I moved aggressively to say, ‘We made a mistake on this one.’ We hit the reset button on this and we’re going to make it right.”