For the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic and to help downtown businesses, the city of Kirkland will suspend parking enforcement of time limitations for parking downtown and will not charge fees for parking in any of the city-owned downtown parking lots.
Recent social distancing measures enacted by the state include a restriction of in-person dining for food establishments. Under the new rule, restaurants, coffee shops, and similar businesses are still allowed to serve customers through take-out, delivery, and drive-through options.
“The social distancing directives from the state and county are having a negative impact on our local Kirkland business,” city manager Kurt Triplett said in a press release. “While we all know that adhering to those directives is the right thing to do to help flatten the curve and slow the spread of COVID-19, the city is exploring all possible ways to help our businesses survive this difficult time. We want to make it as easy as possible for customers to pick up their take-out without feeling nervous about getting a ticket.”
Parking enforcement will still be in effect for vehicles parked in designated disabled parking spaces without disabled permits, as well as vehicles illegally parked in front of fire hydrants or blocking driveways or crosswalks, the release states.
“This is a very challenging time, and we all need to be thinking creatively about how can get through this together,” Mayor Penny Sweet said in the release. “The city is evaluating all possible strategies — big and small — to help our businesses navigate this challenging time. This is one of the small ways we’re signaling to our business community that the city is here to help.”
The city has also published an informational website for businesses, which is accessible at www.kirklandwa.gov/
The city will continue to update its website with information on the COVID-19 outbreak.