You may soon pay more for parking in Bethesda and Silver Spring

A parking meter in Bethesda, Maryland, is shown in this WTOP file photo. (WTOP/Megan Cloherty)

There’s a plan to charge drivers higher prices at parking meters in two parts of Montgomery County, Maryland.

If approved, demand-based parking would be introduced at meters in Bethesda and Silver Spring starting July 1.

It’s part of County Executive Marc Elrich’s proposed budget for 2020, which the county council is in the process of considering.

Eventually, Bethesda parking meters could charge as much as $4 an hour at peak times, compared to the current maximum of $2.25.

“Our intent was not to raise revenue through this method,” Al Roshdieh, the county’s transportation department director, said Tuesday at a council committee work session. “It’s only to create parking within the high demand area in the business district.”

He said if the plan is approved, meter fees in Bethesda would initially only rise slightly to see if they cause drivers to change their behavior.

“You may see a 50 cent increase on some roads, some blocks, such as Woodmont Avenue,” Roshdieh said.

In Silver Spring, maximum prices at parking meters could rise from $1 to $2.25 per hour.

Another change is planned in Wheaton, Maryland, where drivers would have to pay to park at on-street meters and in lots until 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and in Garage 45 until 10 p.m. Monday through Friday. The current cutoff is 6 p.m.

The county council will vote on the proposed budget later this month.

Michelle Basch

Michelle Basch is a reporter turned morning anchor at WTOP News.

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