Controlled Parking Residential Permit Program

Last updated Nov. 20, 2018 - 4:03 pm

In 1979, the City Council of Raleigh passed an ordinance to implement Residential Permit Parking Areas These restricted parking areas are established primarily to help secure available parking for a residential community while encouraging alternative parking plans for non-residents. Generally, these programs govern the parking restrictions in residential communities located near major employers, colleges, universities, medical institutions, and sports complexes.

How to Obtain a First-Time Residential Parking Permit Decal in an Established Residential Parking Permit Area

All first time applicants must attend the ParkLink office in person to submit their application in order to set up a parking account. The ParkLink office is located in the Dillion Building at 310 W. Martin Street, Suite 109. They are across from the Employee Health Center. The following documents must be presented:

  • Valid driver’s license;
  • A valid vehicle registration card for each vehicle for which the applicant is the principle operator; (No copies will be accepted)
  • Proof of residence, ownership or tenancy. If leasing, tenant must present a notarized affidavit signed by the landlord within the last six months or, any utility bill in the name of the applicant; and
  • The cost for one decal is $20 per year. Any outstanding parking citations must be resolved prior to issuance of a Residential Parking Permit.

Annual Renewal Process

a) Permit decals are issued only for the calendar year. Annual renewal notices are typically sent out at the end of each calendar year to permanent residnets only. For lease tenants, permit decals expire at the end term of the lease.

b) One decal is issued per vehicle which must be mounted on the left (driver’s) side of the rear bumper. Decals issued to motorcycles must be displayed on the rear fender. A decal is NOT valid if it is not displayed in the manner required or if it cannot be read clearly. Decals are not portable and cannot be moved from one vehicle to another.

c) After the first year, as a convenience, permanent residents only are permitted to renew their applications by mail simply by completing the renewal portion at the bottom of the annual notice and returning it with check payment and a copy of the current vehicle registration and license or utility bill to the ParkLink office. Students and other tenants must continue to respond in person on a yearly basis and/or when they relocate during any permit year.

d) If you purchase a new vehicle or change license plates during the calendar year you must notify the ParkLink office immediately to avoid citations.

e) Decals remain the property of the City of Raleigh and may be rendered invalid without rebate for misuse.

Guest Passes

In 2016, City Council approved a Pilot Program to provide guest passes to all permanent residents of Controlled Residential Permit Program. These passes were to be filled out and distributed by the residents to their guests, so that guests would be able enjoy the same rights as a permanent resident, and avoid citations.

Each pass is valid for a single 24-hour time frame. It must be fully filled out and displayed face up on the dash of the vehicle.

Books of 10 guest passes can be purchased from the ParkLink Office - 310 W. Martin Street - for a cost of $5.00 per book.


*As of Jan. 1, 2019, the pilot project will end and the City will no longer provide free guest passes during annual renewal.*

Establishing a New Residential Permit Parking Area

The Residential Permit Parking program was first adopted by City Council in 1979 to free up on-street parking for neighborhood residents by restricting habitual parking by non-residents for long periods of time from such generators as schools, businesses, commercial or entertainment districts, etc.

Procedures to Become a New Residential Permit Parking Area

The minimum criterion for incorporation into the program is that the requested area must contain at least eight (8) adjoining block faces that are bounded by property in residential zoning districts, or the area is a continuation/expansion of an existing controlled residential parking area. (Note: a “block face” means one side of a street between two (2) intersecting streets.)

The City will provide guidance and assistance to any resident(s) interested in establishing a residential permit parking program in their area. Please contact the Department of Transportation at 919-996-3996 for further information.

Initial Application Process

a) A petition identifying the boundaries and streets of the area within the proposed controlled residential parking area must be made to the Department of Transportation requesting such designation. The petition must contain the signatures of at least 70% of all affected property owners in favor of the program.

b) Following receipt of the petition by the Department of Transportation, a parking study may be conducted at various times of the day or week. This study shall consider:

  1. The effect on the safety of residents of the area under consideration from intensive use by nonresidents for parking of vehicles, including the storage of vehicles.
  2. The need of the residents of the area to obtain adequate on-street parking adjacent to or close by their places of residence.
  3. The difficulty or inability of residents of the area to secure adequate on-street parking adjacent to or close by their places of residence because of widespread use of available parking spaces in that area by nonresident transient motorists.
  4. The impact of major public facilities and programs on the health, safety, and welfare of the residents of the area and any unreasonable burdens placed on those residents in securing adequate on-street parking and gaining access to their places of residence by virtue of such facilities and programs.
  5. The likelihood of alleviating, by use of a parking permit system, any problem of unavailability of residential parking spaces.
  6. The desire of the residents in the area for the institution of a parking permit system and the willingness of those residents to bear the administrative costs incidental to the issuance of permits authorized by this section.
  7. The need for all residential permit spaces to be available in the area under consideration for use by visitors and the general public for at least sixteen (16) hours, with or without time restriction.
  8. Such other factors as the Director shall deem relevant.

c) Upon satisfactory review of the petition by parking administration and approval by City Council, the Department of Transportation will issue residential parking decals to all affected property owners and/or tenants who are legally and physically residing in the controlled residential parking area.

d) The cost to residents is $20 per decal per calendar year. No pro-rated discount is given for a partial year. Guest passes can be purchases at a cost of $5 per book of 10.

e) It must be understood by all residents that once incorporated into the program the City will also be routinely enforcing all on-street parking regulations which will include permitted vehicles.

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