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Parking in the heart of downtown Davis for the most part is time-restricted and enforced by the Davis Police Department. If your stay at HEC is lengthy you will need to be careful where you park.  You should check the web site for a detailed parking map of the downtown area. However, as of January 2010, the information on the City web page has not been updated since 2007.  Be sure to read all posted signage as to what the parking requirements are in the area you have chosen to park your car.

Free parking on the streets in the vicinity of HEC last for two hours, but becomes difficult to find in the afternoon.  The free surface lot one block north of HEC usually has a space open, and also lasts for two hours.  Parking structures at both 4th and G and 1st and F almost always have spaces available, and are free for up to three hours.

The most popular place to park at HEC is the E Street Plaza directly behind the building.  Rules for this parking lot have changed significantly since 2008, and the City of Davis offers little updated information online.  Here are some frequently asked questions about using the parking lot behind HEC:

How much is the parking?

     $1.00 per hour (or, $0.25 every 15 minutes): payment is required between 8:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays, except Holidays.

How long can I park?

     The parking meters will allow you to pay for up to 8 hours of parking at one time.

Do I have to pay for a whole hour even if I'm just making a quick visit?

     No, you can purchase time in 15-minute increments at a rate of $0.25 cents for each 15-minute increment.

If I decide to stay longer can I add time to the parking meter?

     Yes, the parking meters allow you to add more time without walking back to your car.  Just walk to the nearest meter (there are two locations, one at each entrance into the parking lot), select the "add time" option, and enter the transaction code that is printed on your receipt.  When your transaction is completed, you'll receive a new receipt with your new expiration time.

What payment options do the parking meters accept?

     The parking meters will accept credit cards, bills, and all coins (except pennies).  If you pay with large bills, keep in mind that the meter does not provide change (or refunds for unused time).

Why are there only two parking meters?

     The two parking meters, or pay stations, are "multi-space" meters that allow you to pay for anyone of the 58 numbered parking spaces in the E Street Plaza Parking Lot.  These new meters reduce visual clutter (versus installing "single-space" meters for every space in the lot), accept a variety of payment options (credit cards, bills, coins), and allow people to add more time without walking to their car, among other benefits.

How do the new parking meters work?

     After parking your vehicle, you need to note the parking space number (which is painted on the ground) and proceed to either of the two pay stations, where you will need to:

     1. enter the parking space number,

     2. indicate the amount of time to purchase,

     3. insert the payment (credit cards, bills, and coins), and

     4. retrieve the receipt indicating the expiration time.

Do I have to return to my car and place the receipt on my dash?

     No. The receipt is for your convenience and verification of payment.  It shows your expiration time, so you'll know when your parking meter time expires.

Will disabled placard holders, electric vehicles and motorcycles have to pay to park in the lot?

     Vehicles displaying a valid disabled persons parking placard or license plate are allowed to park in any one of the three designated disabled parking spaces in the lot free of charge.  Electric vehicles (ZEV and NEV only) and motorcycles are also allowed to park in the designated "EV" and "motorcycle" parking spaces free of charge.  Any vehicle parking in one of the remaining 58 numbered parking spaces must pay to park in the lot.

How are the new parking meters enforced?

     Parking enforcement officers will print a report at the meter that shows which parking spaces have been paid for and which ones have not.  Vehicles parked in an unpaid or expired numbered space will be cited.