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Philadelphia Parking Authority to ramp up ticketing cars illegally parked on sidewalks

PPA cracking down on illegally parked cars on sidewalks in Philadelphia
PPA cracking down on illegally parked cars on sidewalks in Philadelphia 03:27

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The Philadelphia Parking Authority started ticketing cars that block sidewalks or ADA-accessible curbs across the city Monday as part of an enhanced enforcement campaign first announced earlier this year.

In conjunction with Variety – the Children's Charity of the Delaware Valley, the PPA's latest "quality of life" initiative aims to stop illegal parking that "seriously impedes access and the free movement of people with disabilities."

As part of the initiative, the two organizations rolled out a series of PSAs in April that highlight the struggles people with disabilities face as they navigate and travel around Philadelphia.

Philadelphia Parking Authority cracks down on illegal parking, partners with disability advocates 01:51

"The goal is really to think about who you are hurting when you do these things. It's a convenient thing to just pull up quick and leave your car there for hours, but you can stop someone from their day," Rich Lazer, executive director of the PPA, told CBS News Philadelphia.

The parking authority started issuing warning notices on April 29. Beginning Monday, the PPA will issue fines ranging from $51 to $76. The PPA added 30 additional enforcement officers to tackle the illegal parking issues specifically.

"Think before you park it," Lazer said. "Your parking in these areas can infringe on somebody's quality of life every day."

On Monday morning, Fishtown resident Ken Benton was walking with his 15-month-old son in a stroller. Benton said they constantly have to dodge cars that are blocking ramps and sidewalks and added that it's not only illegal but also unsafe.

"It's always dangerous. When we're walking around these crosswalks and we have these cars," Benton said, "it blocks your view. You can't see around the cars and you're taking a risk walking into the street, making sure no one's coming. As a Philadelphian, I know no one really stops at stop signs either, so that's an added danger on top of not being able to see around the car."

"It makes me nervous watching my son," Benton added, "and as he grows up in Philadelphia, running out into traffic and potentially not seeing cars around the other cars ... I know there's a lot of controversy on the PPA, but I think this is one of the places where they could really step up and limit some of the risk and dangers for the neighbors."

Tanya and Lamoni Green sit on a deck outside
Lamoni Green and her mother, Tanya CBS News Philadelphia

Lamoni Green, of Pottstown, who will soon attend St. Joseph's University, said the initiative makes her feel safe. She wants to be a motivational speaker to help others with disabilities.

"I am about to go to school," Green said, "and I want to be as safe as possible."

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