Allentown Parking Authority

How the Allentown Parking Authority can help you with your parking needs.

Tamara Weller

Residential Parking Permit Analysis
In April, 2015, City Council requested that the Allentown Parking Authority prepare a comprehensive analysis of all existing Residential Parking Permit zones. The impetus for this request was a request by a resident of Zone Four to allow for expansion along Walnut Street. Instead of granting a single request, Council opted to request an analysis of all zones to determine whether other potential expansion opportunities exist. Authority staff offered to have this analysis completed within 90 days.

Staff initially conducted a physical inventory of all legal parking spots within each zone and made note of ‘no parking’ zones for potential reconsideration. We then noted obvious commercial activity on each block and conducted a sign inventory on applicable blocks to ensure accuracy. While this field work was being conducted, office staff reviewed the number of issued permits by zone, tallied the number of residents requesting to establish a new permit within each zone, and reviewed applicable ticket issuance by zone (*). (*) ticket issuance analysis proved to be not valuable to this process.

A review of the compilation of the data resulting from the above efforts was then conducted. This review allowed staff to assign priority levels to each zone.

Permits and Legal Spaces by Zone

RED/Zone 1                        343         564         (medium priority)
GREEN/Zone 2                   253         414         (high priority)
ORANGE/Zone 3               54           170        
YELLOW/Zone 4                187         275(*)   (high priority)
BLUE/Zone 5                      218         361
(*)275 represents a slight increase in the number of legal spaces in this zone compared to the start of this analysis. That is a result of the sign inventory which allowed for increased opportunities within this zone previously unused by residents

An analysis of the data above resulted in the following recommendations: The Red/1 Zone could be expanded into the north side of the 800 block of Linden Street, resulting in an additional 13 spaces for use by residents. Walnut Street from 9th to Fountain could be added to Yellow/4 zone to allow for 12 additional spaces. (Walnut Street from Fountain to 10th currently includes 4(*) active commercial enterprises and we would not recommend expansion into that half-block as a result) (*When the analysis began in April, 5 businesses were in that half-block which removed that block from our consideration. As we completed our analysis, we re-visited many of these areas to reconfirm data, and we noted the loss of one business on that block.)

Once the field work was completed and priorities were established, the staff then turned its attention to the results of a user survey conducted during this time period. When the analysis began, just over 1000 customers had active RPP permits. Of those, we had email addresses for just under 700 customers whom we invited, via email, to respond to a survey. 106 responses were received. Pertinent to this topic, we ascertained the following:

·         Only 21% of responding customers indicated that ample parking existed on their street after 6 p.m. on weekdays (35% responded ‘sometimes’ and 43% responded ‘never’)

·         When asked if sufficient parking exists on their street on weekends, 45% said ‘rarely/never’ and only 24% said ‘yes’

·         Approximately 1/3 of permit holder’s households contain a vehicle that does not have a permit

·         62% of respondents would like their guests to have access to discounted parking

(Staff continues to develop a revised Visitors permit process in an attempt to balance residents’ desire for discounted parking for their guests, while at the same time recognizing their self-stated belief of a lack of parking in their neighborhood. This new process will be launched by the end of Summer, 2015 to permit holders. Currently, the new permit allows for permit holders to purchase visitor permits for after 5 p.m. guests and weekend guests. The current thought process provides for each permit holder to purchase 3 of each permit per month but the potential impact of this continues to be evaluated.)

Staff then turned its attention to the parking meters within the priority zones to determine necessity. We used the information from the field study to evaluate the need for commercial turnover and to determine current parking patterns. We then compared this information with the insight from the meter collector regarding paid occupancy at these meters. (Financial information is not maintained from every meter, but rather from a ‘beat’ of meters.) Reviewing all of this data resulted in our official recommendation to remove 86 meters from within 3 different zones. The recommended removal of these meters is bolstered by the high occupancy rate of permit holders:

·         500 block Walnut                                             89%

·         00 S 12                                                                94%

·         00 N and S 11                                                     88%/98%

·         1000 Linden                                                        75%

·         1000 Walnut                                                       65%

·         1100 Walnut                                                       64%

APA would recommend that a commensurate time zone be installed after meter removal. For instance, the 500 block of Walnut Street has 3-hour meters and the 00 S 12 has 2 hour meters. We would recommend removal of these unnecessary meters and replace with time zones.

The bottom line impact to residents in each of these zones is demonstrated below. Please note that the additional parking gained as a result of removal of meters is noted simply as one additional space. It is quite likely that the end result will actually be much higher than 1 for 1, as meter spaces are 22’ in length and without the meter designating this spatial requirement, more cars can park on those block faces.

Number of spaces impacted by this analysis:

RED/1                                                    13
GREEN/2                                              0
ORANGE/3                                          4
YELLOW/4                                           70
BLUE/5                                                  48

While the ‘green/2’ zone cannot be currently expanded, the newly designed visitors permit is an important enhancement for residents in this area.

On August 18, these recommendations were presented in power point format to the Public Works Committee of City Council. There was enthusiastic support for the presentation and the recommendations from Committee members. The bill to revise legislation with these recommendations was forwarded positively by a vote of 2 – 0.

On August 19, City Council voted to table this legislation. As a result, these recommendations cannot be implemented.

Year Round Street Cleaning

Year round street cleaning occurs in Districts 1, 2 and 9. Make sure you look for parking signage before you exit your vehicle!

Available Parking

The Allentown Parking Authority is currently offering off street parking in the vicinity of 10th & Linden Streets. Immediate occupancy available! Monthly parking and hourly parking is available at this location. For further details, inquire at:

Off-Hours Parking

The Allentown Parking Authority is currently offering off hours parking to residents who want to find a place to park their car after 5 p.m. If you live in the vicinity of our parking garages, and would like covered parking, and you will use the space primarily between the hours of 5 p.m. and 7:30 a.m. Monday through Friday (and anytime on the weekends!), you are invited to request a specially priced permit for only $45 per month. Residents near our Fountain Lot can park in the lot, off hours, for just $25 per month. For further details, inquire at:
Or call, 610 841 9090 and make sure you tell the customer service rep that you are a neighbor looking for evening rate information.


Community Organizations:

The Allentown Parking Authority is currently offering the use of two lots (Fountain and Cata) to community/arts/education organizations. Lots can be leased, on a first come, first served basis for a flat rate during the evenings. It's a great opportunity for you to provide designated parking for your guests! For further details, inquire at:




The Allentown Parking Authority is governed by a 5 person Board of Directors, each of whom is appointed by the city’s Mayor. The 2015 Board members are:


  1. MaryEllen Koval | Chair
  2. Candida Affa| Vice Chair
  3. Ted Zeller| Assistant Secretary
  4. Sara Hailstone| Secretary
  5. Daryl Hendricks|Treasurer

  6. Click here to download a Word doc of the latest meeting minutes.

The next Board Meeting is scheduled for October 28.  at 12:00 noon at III City Center, 515 W. Hamilton St., Allentown PA.

Allentown Parking Authority 2014 Audit Report

Click here to download a PDF of the APA 2014 Audit Report.

Right to Know Law

The Allentown Parking Authority is a local agency pursuant to the definition of 'local agency' of the Right to Know Law. The Authority's Open Records Officer is Executive Director Tamara Dolan. To file a request for information, use the following link:
Act 44 Disclosure Form
Click here to download a PDF of the Act 44 Disclosure Form.
Lots that will be available to City residents during snow emergencies:

LOT NAME                                                  LOCATION


Walnut & 9th                                                 (behind Holiday Inn at 9th & Hamilton)

Spiral Deck                                                    (on Linden between 8th & 9th)

Allentown Transportation Center (ATC)          6th & Linden

Government Deck                                           (4th & Ham)



Allentown resident's vehicles may park for free during snow emergencies.

Allentown Parking Authority

Allentown Parking Authority

© 2015 Allentown Parking Authority | All Rights Reserved.

603 W. Linden St | Allentown, 18101

Phone: 610-841-9090 | Fax: 610-432-3330

Related links of interest:

City of Allentown | Allentown Codified Ordinances