Sofia Ups Parking Fees, Tightens Regime
After long hours of heated debates, Sofia municipal council approved on Thursday plans for a hike in parking fees, to be enforced as of the beginning of September.
The fee for an hour's stay in the blue parking zones in downtown Sofia will increase from BGN 1 to BGN 2, under the adopted program for development of the public transport.
The fee for parking in the green zone in Sofia has been set at BGN 1 per hour.
Drivers will be allowed to park their vehicles in the blue and green zones for no more than two and four hours respectively.
All who want to pay their parking fees in a hassle-free way have to send a text message to number 1302 for subscribers of the three mobile operators Mtel, Globul and Vivacom.
After sending the SMS, the person gets a reply that the payment was successful. Five minutes before the pre-paid hour elapses, the subscriber receives a notification.
The adopted measures are likely to trigger anger among drivers and people living in the blue and green zones, who will be obliged to pay an annual fee of BGN 150 and BGN 100 respectively. Families living there will have to dig deeper in their pockets and pay fees three times higher if they have a second car.
In a bid to justify the controversial measures, municipality members said they aim to bring order in the parking lots and ease traffic in the capital.
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