Zone changes and new monthly permits: Prague announces overhaul of parking system

The capital wants to streamline parking for residents while taking into account more eco-friendly measures.

Expats.cz Staff

Written by Expats.cz Staff Published on 06.12.2023 10:52:00 (updated on 06.12.2023) Reading time: 2 minutes

The City of Prague has announced plans to revamp its city-wide system of parking, which will – among other things – feature a change in who can park in specific zones and the introduction of a monthly parking permit for residents. The capital hopes to streamline and simplify parking while taking on a more environment–focused approach.

As announced by Deputy Mayor for Transport Zdeněk Hřib, the new proposal introduces several new features, including city-wide, temporary parking permits, and a special permit for delivery vehicles. He also wants to phase out parking meters, which dispense short-term parking permits.

Less parking in resident zones

Under the proposed changes, parking areas reserved for residents (blue zones) will receive increased protection. As a result, the option to pay for hourly non-resident parking in the blue zone will no longer be allowed. However, people who want to temporarily park in blue zones for special visits (such as repairmen or family members) will be able to do so with the introduction of so-called hourly resident credit.

Meanwhile, purple and orange zones will be designated for non-residents, who can buy a monthly permit to park in all areas covered by these zones. Parking alterations will affect various zones within the city, predominantly targeting the center of Prague.

An environmental focus

New permits will be charged at different prices based on the type of car used. People with electric or hydrogen cars will pay less than those with gasoline or diesel cars. Cars that have a Euro 5 emissions standard or lower (essentially, high-emissions-producing cars) won't be eligible for these visitor permits. This change aims to help make the environment better by encouraging more eco-friendly vehicles.

Despite wanting to take on a more environmentally friendly approach, the capital will nevertheless abolish free parking for electric cars. Hřib notes that the free parking was only ever meant to be a temporary measure. Electric cars will continue to have reserved spaces where there are charging stations.

More options for delivery vehicles

A new short-term parking permit for delivery vehicles – with time limits of 15 minutes or half an hour – will be introduced to prevent vans and lorries from inconvenient parking on the city’s sidewalks.

Prices may change, too

Precise adjustments in parking prices remain unspecified, though the municipality is reconsidering its substantial subsidization of parking fees. The city currently subsidizes annual parking permits at a rate of about 90 percent, which Hřib called "unsustainable in the long term.”

The changes are currently under deliberation and have been submitted to individual town halls for feedback. The shift away from free parking for electric cars is slated to come into force by the end of this year, whereas all other changes are set to come into force in October 2024 if the municipality reaches a full agreement on them.

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Critics point out that raising parking fees in Prague without effectively enforcing regulations and collecting fines may lead to a surge in drivers disregarding the rules. This could notably impair the system's functionality in the long run.

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