Parking Enforcement & Restrictions
Parking Restrictions within the City of Berkeley are set by both local parking ordinances and by the California Vehicle Code. Local parking ordinances and accompanying fines are included section 14 of the Berkeley Municipal Code. Some of the most common types of violations and restricted parking rules are outlined below.
Please note that, "It is unlawful for any person to park or leave standing, or cause to be parked or left standing any vehicle upon any public street in the City for seventy-two or more consecutive hours. (Ord. 4006-NS § 1 (part), 1964: Ord. 3954-NS § 2, 1963)" BMC Section 14.36.050
The "72-Hour Rule" applies to any public street in the City, regardless of other parking designations or restrictions. To report any vehicles that have been left on a public street for more than 72 hours, call 981-5890.
Painted curbs mean that parking is controlled:
Curbs marked by red indicate no stopping, standing or parking under any circumstances and are enforced 24 hours per day, 7 days a week.
Curbs marked by yellow are for commercial use and are for loading and unloading merchandise or materials. These zones are enforced from 7:00 AM to 6:00PM, Monday through Saturday except when otherwise designated by appropriate signs. Some metered parking spaces may be yellow zones during certain hours. In order to use a yellow zone for up to (20) twenty minutes drivers must have any one of three requirements; 1) A City of Berkeley Business license decal affixed to the left rear bumper of the vehicle; 2) A marked commercial vehicle with logo or lettering; 3) Commercial plates issued by Department of Motor Vehicles. Drivers must be actively engaged in loading or unloading. Non commercial vehicles may load or unload passengers only for up to three minutes at a yellow curb.
Curbs marked by green indicate short-term, restricted or limited time zone parking. These zones are marked by signs that usually indicate five (5) minutes to thirty (30) minutes limited parking. Green zones are enforced Monday through Saturday from 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM, except when otherwise designated by appropriate signs.
Curbs marked by white are designated passenger loading zones. Unless signs are posted otherwise, drivers may use white zones for up to three minutes to drop off or pick up passengers or to deposit mail in an adjacent mailbox. . White curbs are enforced 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, except when otherwise designated by appropriate signs.
Blue Curbs/Disabled Parking Spaces
Blue curbs and disabled parking spaces are reserved for vehicles displaying valid disabled placards or disabled persons license plate from any state. The crosshatched areas adjacent to disabled parking spaces, accommodating side-loading vans for the disabled are identically enforced. These curbs and spaces are enforced 24 hours a day, 7 days a week on public streets and in private lots. Fines for vehicles parking at a disabled parking place without a placard or any vehicle parking in the crosshatched contiguous spaces are set by the State of California and begin at $250.00. The City of Berkeley has set the local minimum fine at $280.00. For the City's guidelines on Disabled Parking Placard use in general, click here.
Other Parking Restrictions
Time Limits May Not Be Extended
Time limits are strictly enforced and may not be extended by adding more money after time has expired. This applies to both single space and multi-space meters per BMC 14.52.060.
On-street parking is restricted on certain days and times for street sweeping. For information about street sweeping locations, schedules, and holidays, visit the Public Works web site or call Public Works Customer Service at (510) 981-6300(voice) or (510) 981-6903 (TDD).
Construction Vehicle Parking
A parking permit and temporary No Parking / Construction signs should be requested as part of the Building Permit Application process.
Contact the Permit Center for further questions at 981-7500.
No Parking Temporary Signs
The City of Berkeley and/or a person authorized by the City of Berkeley must post "No Parking, Tow Away" signs at least 72 hours in advance of a construction project and 24 hours before any other event. To avoid receiving a citation and/or having the vehicle towed, a driver should check his parked vehicle at least every 24 hours, as it is the driver's responsibility to ensure the vehicle is not parked in a tow away zone.
Coach Zones (Bus Zones)
Coach Zones or Bus Zones are reserved for buses only. Standing, stopping or parking under any circumstances is prohibited. Bus zones are marked by signs or red colored curbs and are enforced 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Fines for vehicles stopped at a bus zone are set by the State of California and begin at $250.00.
Preferential Parking Permit Area
Permit neighborhoods have restricted two hour parking zones unless a residential parking permit is displayed on the vehicle. These zones are marked by signs that indicate the neighborhood parking permit areas and the days and times enforced. Residential Parking Permit Areas are enforced from 8:00AM to 7:00PM, with the day of enforcement varying, depending on area. Vehicles without a Residential Parking Permit for the area may park for a total of up to 2 hours per block face, defined as both sides of the street between intersecting cross-streets.
Football Game Days
Vehicles parked in violation of Residential Parking Permit restrictions in Areas A, B and D will be issued double parking fines on football game days.
No Parking Between 2:00 A.M. and 5:00 A.M
It shall be unlawful for any person to park any heavy-duty commercial vehicle on any street between the hours of 2:00 a.m. and 5:00 a.m. for a length of time greater than one (1) hour.
Use of Streets for Storage Vehicles Prohibited
It shall be unlawful for any person to park, keep or store any motor vehicle which has been damaged, wrecked or is in a state of disrepair upon any public street in the City of Berkeley in connection with or as a part of the business operation of any automobile repair garage, body repair shop, auto wrecking establishment or similar business activity.
Fire District Parking Restrictions
"No Parking" signs have been installed along narrow hillside streets to improve fire truck access. During the October 1991 Oakland-Berkeley Hills Fire, many of the streets were impassable to fire trucks. After the fire, the Fire District was established, and those streets most difficult to traverse were identified. Parking restrictions have been marked with either red curbs or signage in these locations.
Do not stop, park, or leave your car in any of the following places:
- Within an intersection;
- On or blocking a crosswalk (marked or unmarked) or sidewalk;
- Between a safety zone and curb;
- Within 15 feet of a fire hydrant or the driveway entrance to any fire station;
- On or within 7-1/2 feet of a railroad track;
- Closer than 3 feet to a sidewalk access ramp for the physically handicapped;
- In front of a public driveway;
- On the roadway side of any vehicle parked at the curb or edge of a highway (double parking);
- Beside a curb marked as a bus stop (painted red);
- In a tunnel or on a bridge, except where permitted by signs;
- Where signs or markings prohibit parking (exceptions allowed for disabled vehicles);
- Beside or opposite any street or highway construction work where stopping or parking would obstruct traffic.