Local News

Chapel Hill to begin ticketing front-yard parkers

Posted July 31, 2011 10:12 p.m. EDT
Updated July 31, 2011 11:15 p.m. EDT

— Chapel Hill plans to start cracking down on people who park their cars in front yards, issuing two notices to homeowners before steep daily fines kick in.

The town's new Land Use Management Ordinance, which goes into effect Monday, prohibits parking areas from taking up more than 40 percent of the front yard. It also requires areas used for parking be paved or covered in gravel.

Residents who continue to park on the front lawn after Monday will receive two warnings, town officials said, before fines of $100 per day are imposed. Citations will be issued to property owners, not tenants.

The ordinance was passed to primarily address complaints about the unsightliness of front-yard parking on rental properties where multiple students live, officials said.  

Some homeowners, however, think the town is overstepping its bounds.

"I pay taxes on this land," said Chapel Hill resident Louise Felix, who parks her pickup truck on the grass in her front yard every day. 

"This is my yard, I should be able to park anything I want to park on it," she said.

Felix said she will not hesitate to sue if she receives a front-yard parking citation. 

"I would take them to court... and I would not think another thing about it," she said.