With changes to the route structure, the Congress Park stop on the Metra line is now the last suburban stop before the train makes its express run to the Loop. That has brought an overflow of exurban commuters driving into Brookfield to catch the train after finding someplace to park. That has led to streets near the station – at least those not protected by residential permits – being swamped with all-day parkers. The Public Safety Committee is mulling an expansion of resident-only permits to more streets.
But a creative, short-term fix is the village’s plan to make minor (as in $5,000) repairs to the village-owned Moose building’s parking lot and then charging commuters to park in that lot.
Everyone knows that commuter parking is not the final best use of this property. But in this economy, it is unlikely there will be an immediate call to redevelop the site. So raising cash at $2.50 a car per day is a win-win for the village. We’ll see if additional payment options – beyond smart phone apps – become essential to building a crowd. Meanwhile, this is a good move.