PPA begins issuing tickets, fines amid crackdown on ADA mobility violations in Philadelphia

Vehicles parked on sidewalks and blocking curb ramps are now being ticketed by the Philadelphia Parking Authority. Enforcement started Monday.



This story originally appeared on 6abc.

A crackdown is here for illegally parked cars on Philadelphia streets.

Vehicles parked on sidewalks and blocking curb ramps are now being ticketed by the Philadelphia Parking Authority.

The PPA has been distributing warning notices over the past two weeks. Enforcement started on Monday.

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It has all been part of its ADA Mobility Access Initiative.

“The goal was to get the message out there first, not just come out there heavy-handed. Get the message out, who you are affecting, what you’re doing. Think before you park,” said PPA Executive Director Rich Lazer.

According to census data from the city, an estimated 17% of Philadelphia residents have some form of disability, which comes out to about 250,000 people.

When cars block sidewalks and crosswalks, all of this seriously impedes the mobility of people with disabilities.

In March, PPA said they were hiring 30 new parking enforcement officers to focus on this initiative.

Lazer says it is not their job to increase violations. Instead, the agency’s goal is to change behavior.

“We do a lot of this enforcement in Center City and the business areas, but we weren’t doing it as much in the neighborhood and we were getting a lot of complaints about it. And to see how this affects people’s lives – seniors, people with disabilities, parents trying to get their kids to school – this kind of prompted this additional enforcement,” Lazer said.

In Queen Village on 4th Street, Action News spotted a van parked on the sidewalk, while on 16th Street in Francisville, there were three.

Alessandra Bonafide says it’s a daily struggle to find parking in her Fairmount neighborhood.

She believes this latest enforcement will make parking even more difficult.

“It is very slim. Very slim and very narrow pickings,” said Bonafide.”It’s very congested. I feel like people are on top of each other without the room to actually grow.”

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Fines are $76 in Center City and $51 in other neighborhoods.

“Of course, the more difficult parking is, the more difficult it is for the city and for residents and so forth. We do have our challenges,” said Toure Fernandez of South Philadelphia.

Earlier this year, the agency rolled out public service announcements highlighting people with disabilities who have to navigate neighborhoods with blocked sidewalks and ramps.

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