Mayor explains why you can’t park next to a driveway in West Valley City

Apr 29, 2021, 5:35 PM | Updated: Apr 30, 2021, 12:41 pm
west valley city driveway...
(image: West Valley City Police Department)
(image: West Valley City Police Department)

SALT LAKE CITY — A new parking ordinance passed in West Valley City prohibits parking within 5 feet of a driveway — even if it’s your own.

West Valley City Mayor Ron Bigelow joined Dave Noriega and Salt Lake County Councilwoman Aimee Winder Newton — filling in for Debbie Dujanovic — to explain what prompted this ordinance and to clarify residents’ misunderstanding of it.

Can’t fit into your driveway in West Valley City? 

Bigelow said a resident complained there are so many vehicles parked on both sides of their narrow street that it was difficult to maneuver into the driveway.

“What is the plan for enforcement on this?” Newton asked. “Is this something where people can just call the city and complain if somebody is too close to their driveway and it’s making it hard for them to back out?” 

“[If] there’s a problem or it’s consistent, day after day after day, someone can let us know, and we can go and enforce that, so that people can have access to their own driveway,” Bigelow said. “Now 5 feet […] wasn’t much, but it was enough that at least people could still get in their driveways.”

The mayor said the ordinance is not meant to enforce parking for one-time events like a neighbor having family and friends over for the holidays or a little league baseball game — rather, it’s for consistent, daily nuisance parking.

Residents sound off against new law

“What has been the reaction from your community on this?” Newton asked.

“This won’t have a huge impact. People will think that maybe their whole lives are going to change, but for the most part, it’ll make little difference, except on those certain streets where it’s a problem,” Bigelow said.

Others have said the ordinance is just a way for the city to make money.

“They don’t understand government finances because rarely do we make money,” the mayor said. “We’ll actually lose money on it.”

Still, others complained the space on the street near their driveways belongs to them.

“Others have said, ‘That’s my parking spot. I want the front of my street, for me,’ and I say, ‘Sorry, that doesn’t work that way. That’s a public street, anyone can park there,” the mayor said.

Background on West Valley City ordinance: 

New West Valley City parking ordinance facing criticism online


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Mayor explains why you can’t park next to a driveway in West Valley City