The city is expanding its parking space management, according to which a ticket or a parking permit is required for every car. But there is a lot of criticism of the concept.
Frankfurt – The number of districts in Frankfurt is growing where cars can only be parked on weekdays with a ticket or a resident parking permit. By November 2021, the city will set up District 22, which will encompass the streets between Friedberger and Eckenheimer Landstrasse and between Glauburgstrasse and Anlagenring. This is followed by the 24er, which connects in the east to Berger Straße. There should be 42 zones across the city by 2025. But many people reject the concept.
One of them is master mechanic Peter Otter, who lives and works in Bornheim. His workshop is in Zone 41, one of the four in which the city began parking space management at the beginning of last few years, which is primarily intended to displace commuters. In February 2020 he expressed his concern in Bornheim Local Advisory Board 4 that the concept would have an extreme impact on his business. His fears could be confirmed, he says now. The parking regulation is an “enormous burden for the traders”.
Parking in Frankfurt: residents hardly see any advantages from the new regulation
His employees do not live in Frankfurt, says Otter. The long journey by public transport cannot be expected of them, nor is it possible to buy a parking ticket every day. They also park their cars in the small courtyard on Enkheimer Strasse, which is actually intended for customers’ vehicles. He now has to ask them to pick up their car faster, says the master mechanic, “which is usually not possible because they have to work”. A lot of time is therefore spent on maneuvering. Even for him as a resident, the regulation would hardly bring any advantages. Because there are still too few parking spaces, “they were not occupied by commuters”. In Frankfurt, however, the parking fees for residents are also set to rise – and thus be adjusted to the real costs.
Kita manager Elke Schulmeyer also expressed her concerns at the February 2020 meeting, which unfortunately have come true, as she now says. Many of the 30 employees in the two kindergartens and the crèche of the evangelical parish of Bornheim are dependent on cars because they cannot afford the rents in Frankfurt. The municipality only has three parking spaces for these. Some have switched to bicycles, but it is difficult in the rain and in winter. Most tried to “manage it somehow”. Two colleagues have already quit, says Schulmeyer. A lot of people split off at job interviews. Exceptions for parking permits would be desirable.
“Every job that we lose because of a parking space is a disaster”
Jürgen Schäfer, managing director of the Bethanienkrankenhaus, also demands this. Especially for the staff who are dependent on the car because they live outside of Frankfurt or work at times when there are hardly any buses or trains. At Bethanien there are around 40 to 50 employees. Parking tickets are too expensive for many. The hospital on the examinee has already launched an extensive mobility concept. The Agaplesion corporation, to which the hospital belongs, is building more residential buildings for employees, for example at the Markuskrankenhaus location. In addition, Bethanien supports public transport tickets and leasing bicycles, says the managing director. Staff across the city could also borrow one of the Call-a-Bike bikes for free for half an hour. But despite all the attempts, employees quit, and job interviews were rejected because of the parking space situation, says Schäfer. The fight for nurses is tough. “Every job that we lose because of a parking space is a disaster.” As before, patients can park their cars at a discount in the neighborhood garage directly in front of the Bethanien. But the underground car park does not help the staff.
Fight for parking spaces in Frankfurt: Many smaller companies also affected
The Katharinen Hospital on Seckbacher Landstrasse has its own parking spaces for this purpose. While visitors inside there had to pay one euro per hour before the parking space management, it is now twice as much. Since two euros are also due at the city’s parking machines, the parking spaces were regularly blocked by commuters, remembers Managing Director Alexandra Weizel. That has changed because of the higher price. And since the demand from visitors in the pandemic is falling and visitors can also be offered personally discounted parking spaces. In addition, Katharinen subsidizes annual tickets for buses and trains. However, the offer is being accepted less than expected, says Weizel. You have the impression that with many victories it is comfort.
Since January 2020, many Bornheimers who are struggling with parking space management have contacted mayor Hermann Steib (Greens). Smaller companies in particular have complained that their employees are paying for parking from outside. The parking card that traders can apply for a company vehicle is not enough for many. It is also not available to everyone.
Karin Guder (Greens) on parking in Frankfurt: Many have concerns due to ignorance
There were also complaints from families, says Steib, in which grandparents are cared for and who regularly die when they are visited. The parking zones had also been a cause for concern. The city has made improvements, residents: nnen are now allowed to partially park their car on both sides of the street, even if one is in a different district. However, this does not apply to roads that have a separating character, such as the Seckbacher Landstrasse. Steib has also heard complaints from citizens of the neighboring quarters, to which many commuters go.
The head of Nordend Local Advisory Board 3, Karin Guder (Greens), also received the first complaints. She welcomes the fact that the city is expanding its parking management. But the quarters are expelled more quickly so that there is no displacement in districts where the regulation has not yet come into force. In addition, the population must be better informed. According to Guder, many citizens have concerns due to ignorance.
Parking in Frankfurt: Support companies in financing job tickets
A north ender recently complained to her that friends and acquaintances could no longer sleep with him because the fees were too high, says the mayor. When, on weekdays, tickets only have to be taken from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., “Parking still costs nothing at night”. According to Guder, it would make sense for the city to support companies in financing job tickets. Solutions are also needed for employees who are not entitled to a commercial parking permit.
But whether nurses, educators and employees of hospitals can apply for parking permits in the future is still open, Wolfgang Siefert, advisor to the mobility department head Stefan Majer (Greens), “the new coalition has to clarify”. What is certain, however, is that all parking zones are to be set up by 2025. Provided there are enough parking ticket machines. Because the manufacturer already had delivery problems in 2020. And now, according to Siefert, there is another bottleneck. (Boris Schlepper)