CITY HALL — Shoppers hoping to test their luck by parking on Saturday or Sunday without feeding the meter would face longer odds of getting away scot-free under a proposal included in the city's 2018 budget.
Aiming to generate an additional $4 million in revenue, city officials are poised to expand enforcement efforts in more commercial areas of the city, where business owners want to see parking spots open up frequently to attract more shoppers, officials said.
A test of the program — which offered ticket writers an opportunity to work overtime in conjunction with employees from two city contractors that generated $2.6 million this year — will be expanded to more areas of the city, Comptroller Erin Keane told aldermen on the first day of hearings that will shape the city's nearly $10 billion spending plan.
Parking enforcement aides soon will have state-of-the-art handheld computers that will track complaints in real time and allow supervisors to deploy ticket-writers to the shopping districts with the most complaints, said Molly Poppe, a spokeswoman for the city's Finance Department.
Drivers will also pay $2 more to park at a meter near Wrigley Field starting two hours before Chicago Cubs games and other special events at the Friendly Confines and ending one hour afterward.
However, city officials have no plan to expand the surge parking restrictions to parts of the city around the United Center or Soldier Field, as originally proposed, Poppe said.