CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – Limited parking on King Street during the weekend is here to stay.
Parking is prohibited on King between Spring and Calhoun Streets from 6:00 p.m. to 3:00 a.m. on Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays. This has been in place since May 2021, as part of a pilot program.
City officials said new signage will be added to King Street on October 17, making this a permanent rule.
“We’ve seen some great benefits from it and we’re wanting to make it more permanent so we’ve got some signs that will start going up next week,” said Capt. Jason Bruder with the Charleston Police Department.
Police said it’s been hard to enforce the parking limitations without the signs, which is why many drivers still park on King during those hours. Bags were placed over the meters during the pilot program to prevent people from parking.
“We’ve had to be a little lenient on when we ticket down there, but this is where that permanent signage is going to make it more clear what days it is effective and the enforcement side of it,” explained Capt. Bruder.
Police said they will be more strict with enforcement once the signs go up.
Meanwhile, some area business owners are happy to see the no-parking rule stick around.
“I think it’s great. I mean, anything to make this great street that we have here in Charleston on King Street, safe—we’re all for it,” said Roy Neal, the owner of El Jefe Texican Cantina.
The changes are part of the Charleston Police Department’s larger King Street Safety Plan which was rolled out to crack down on crime.
“By having that parking blocked off we’re not allowing people to just hang out on the streets there. They’re either going into establishments or moving on to the next one,” said Capt. Bruder.
Officials said drivers who disobey the signs may receive a ticket or get towed if necessary.
City officials said alternative, discounted parking is available at the Visitor’s Center Garage at 63 Mary Street. Drivers will pay a $7 flat rate fee after 3 pm and a $5 flat rate fee after 5 pm. The discounted rate ends at 3 am.
Other options include Midtown Garage at 558 King Street and Marion Square Garage at 399 King Street. Both cost $1 per half hour.