The busy Metra commuter rail train stations in Naperville meant that it could take years to get a parking permit. That is no longer true:
All parking spaces in Naperville commuter rail lots will transition to daily fees in the coming months.
The Naperville City Council Tuesday voted to eliminate the parking permit system at the Route 59 and Naperville/Fourth Avenue Metra rail stations and require commuters to pay only for the days they park…
Even before the COVID-19 pandemic changed the frequency people commute to Chicago, city staff was working to address the problem of spaces not be used in permit lots.
Effective immediately, no new permits will be issued for any Naperville commuter parking lots.
In the coming months, staff will modify the municipal code for council consideration with a goal implementing the daily pay-by-plate fee model in July…
When demand does return, the city can look into implementing more technology, such as parking guidance and reservations systems, Louden said.
This is a big change in a community where finding parking at the train station was difficult for years. Suburbanites are often used to plentiful and cheap parking so both a waiting period for a permit and a shift to a first-come-first-served model can irk different people.
It would be interesting to hear more about how changing work patterns – more work from home, perhaps more suburb to suburb commuting over time compared to trips into Chicago – affect suburban life. Are we in for a significant reckoning with commuter rail and mass transit when fewer people use it regularly for work? How about big parking lots: do they survive? Or, do suburban schedules change when fewer people work 9-5 shifts?