Riverside’s village board voted 4 to 0 on Nov. 3 to increase commuter parking permit fees, 24-hour parking permit fees and the amount it charges to park at meters, changes that will become effective Jan. 1, 2017.

Starting next year, the cost for commuter parking permits for Lot 1 (which is immediately adjacent to the main train station) and Lot 8 (located along the railroad right-of-way east of the Arcade Building) will jump from $105 per quarter to $130 per quarter.

In addition, 24-hour parking permits for lots 1, 2 (on the south side of Pine Avenue), 3 (along Park Place) and 4 (on the north side of Pine Avenue) will increase from $150 per quarter to $175 per quarter.

Finally, metered parking in Lot 1 and on the street near the train station will increase from 35 cents every two hours to 25 cents per hour.

The increases to the permit parking are expected to bring an additional $22,000 in revenue, while the meter increase is expected to bring in another $10,000. The money goes into a special parking lot fund that pays for maintenance of the village-owned parking lots.

Village officials in the past couple of years have discussed following sustainable practices for future parking lot improvements, a decision that would come with a greater upfront expense, though using products such as permeable pavers have a longer life than asphalt and direct storm water away from the village’s sewer system.

The village board called for increases in parking rates in October 2015, but the request for higher commuter parking rates had to be OK’d by Metra, because Lot 1 is on land owned by the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad.

The ability to charge the new rates were made part of a new 20-year lease agreement between Riverside and BNSF in June.

According to a survey of parking rates charged in nearby municipalities, Riverside’s new rates are comparable to their neighbors’ rates, though they are slightly high per quarter than both Berwyn and Brookfield, the village’s immediate neighbors to the east and west, respectively.

Berwyn charges commuters $100 per quarter for either street or garage parking. Brookfield charges $90 per quarter for commuter parking.

Riverside OK’s ‘to-go’ liquor

In response to requests from a pair businesses – one to open soon and one sometime in the next year – Riverside now allows restaurants and brewpubs to include liquor sales for takeout and delivery orders, if those businesses opt to obtain a special add-on license permitting it.

According to Sonya Abt, the village’s community development director, the owners of both LaBarra Ristorante, which is scheduled to open soon at 2 E. Burlington St., and Safehouse Brewing, under construction at 363-36 E. Burlington St., approached the village seeking an amendment to the liquor code to include liquor sales for carry out and delivery orders. 

The owners of LaBarra also requested a change in the hours for a Class E (full liquor) license, to begin liquor sales at 11 a.m. Monday through Friday and extend Sunday hours to 11 p.m. The code now for a Class E license mandates no sale of liquor prior to noon on weekdays or after 10 p.m. on Sunday.

The cost for the add-on license allowing liquor to be sold with carry out and delivery orders will be $450 annually. Initially, village staff had proposed separate add-ons for delivery and takeout at $450 apiece, but trustees decided to consolidate it.

“Nine hundred dollars seems like a lot,” said Trustee Joseph Ballerine.

According to an incentive agreement approved by the village board earlier this year, the $450 license fee for LaBarra’s add-on license will be waived for the first three years the restaurant is open.