Parking revenues in Milwaukee to close the budget gap

Drivers may soon have to pay to park until 9 p.m. in downtown Milwaukee, and that’s at least in part because of a lack of funding for the Hop Streetcar.

The Milwaukee Department of Public Works expects another $ 3 million hole in the streetcar budget in 2022. The department plans to close that gap with parking revenues.

In addition to extending parking meter hours to 9 p.m. downtown, the city wants to increase the cost of parking tickets next year.

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Alderman Scott Spiker is concerned that the people who pay these additional fees and fines will be the ones who can least afford them.

“The Conservatives worried about the streetcar. But there is a progressive argument with the concern about the streetcar, which has to do with how we fund it?” Spiker said during a DPW budget hearing. “If it comes from the transport fund, and although the income comes from our parking lots, it is down quite a bit. But it also comes from tickets. And then, who gets the tickets? “

The Hop Streetcar in Milwaukee

The number of passengers on hops is still about a third of what it was before the COVID-19 pandemic, with an average of 704 passengers per day in 2021.

DPW commissioner Jeff Polenske said there were still no immediate plans to charge a tariff.

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