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Oops -- City Revamping Signs On 3,000 Parking Meters

DENVER (CBS4) - Following cries that wording on some downtown parking meters was misleading and deceptive, the city of Denver has decided to go back and alter the signage on thousands of parking meters downtown to make it more clear that drivers have to pay for overnight parking.

In April a CBS4 Investigation showed how many drivers were getting ticketed for not feeding the meters during the overnight hours.

Many said they thought a block letter sign on the meters that said "Overnight Parking Allowed" meant they could park for free after 10 p.m. But that wasn't the case.

"It's confusing, it's confusing," said Denver attorney Michael Canges. "I suspect most people would believe it was free from 10 p.m. to 8 a.m."

Chris Katchis reviewed the wording on the meters and concluded "I'd say its definitely confusing, even for a college graduate."

Now, the city agrees.

"One thing we have heard consistently is that the signage is somewhat confusing," Daelene Mix with Denver Public Works said. "There were some people who believed they could park free overnight."

So beginning in August, Mix says city crews will return to the 3,000 meters designated for overnight parking and affix a small sticker to the street side of the meters that lets drivers know parking rates for all hours of the day.

Right now that small sticker is located on the back, or "pay" side of the meter, facing away from the street.

Mix says the confusing signage and wording on the meters is not an attempt to make more money.

"We're not out there just trying to generate revenue," she said.

But there will be no change to the sign on the street side of the meter that reads "Overnight Parking Allowed."

Brian Rickel, who got an overnight parking ticket in April after he misunderstood the wording on a meter, believes the city is compounding its initial mistake.

"Until they change the big sticker that says overnight parking allowed, there's no way that's going to fix it," said Rickel. "Really, the big lettering is what needs to be changed."

"That's hardly a fix printing more stickers that say the exact same thing. Its not re-wording it or making it clearer to the user."

Mix says if the additional sticker doesn't clarify things, Public Works will look at additional changes to the wording on the meters.


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