City Hall is targeting large vehicles like this one, amending the municipal code to restrict parking for vehicles over 5 feet or taller at very specific locations, like entrances to alleys, where visibility would be impaired.

(photo by Brandon Wise)

CITYWIDE — The Santa Monica City Council could make it more difficult to park tall vehicles in parts of the city at its meeting next week.

The council will hear a second reading of an ordinance requested by three city departments to post signs prohibiting the parking of vehicles over 5 feet high in locations where they could impact visibility or traffic safety.

Should the ordinance pass, two existing sections of the municipal code will be combined so that vehicles over 5 feet tall cannot park in specific locations in Santa Monica, particularly near alleyways where the tall cars would make it difficult to see oncoming traffic.

Currently, two sections govern residential and commercial districts respectively, making it difficult to post signs, according to city staff.

The 5 foot limit is actually shorter than the 6 feet prescribed in the state code, but makes enforcement easier, said Sam Morrissey, City Hall’s principal transportation engineer.

That will include tall SUVs and recreational vehicles, Morrissey said, although people will still be able to acquire permits for some kinds of RVs.

“If we determine there are safety considerations that would limit visibility, we would do it in that case,” he said. “We do realize that 5 feet is an SUV height.”

Notice of the proposed ordinance will require the installation of signs at every entrance of Santa Monica, which includes more than 50 locations.

Installations and signs could cost as much as $5,000.


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