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City Gets Strict on Overnight RV Parking

The city has received an increase in complaints from residents regarding RV parking and the impact the practice has on their quality of life.

The Carlsbad City Council has directed staff to draft a new ordinance that would restrict overnight parking of recreational and oversized vehicles citywide, to cut down on overnight camping on city streets.

Although overnight camping on city streets is already illegal, the City of Carlsbad Police Department has limited tools to address these complaints and dedicates a lot of time responding to the negative effects of overnight parking and camping.  

In a workshop on Tuesday, Oct. 16, the Council directed staff to draft an ordinance that would prohibit overnight parking of RVs within the City of Carlsbad between the hours of 2 a.m. and 5 a.m. The ordinance would include exceptions to accommodate the needs of city residents and guests. 

“The City of Carlsbad wants to continue to allow residents and tourists the ability to enjoy our great coastal weather and attractions in their recreational and oversized vehicles during the day,” City of Carlsbad Deputy Director of Transportation Bryan Jones said. But he noted that the practice of camping overnight in RVs on city streets results in many problems and complaints. 

“Some RV users are negatively affecting our quality of life.  We are now following other jurisdictions that have such ordinances,” Jones said. Some other coastal cities restrict overnight parking by RVs and have introduced parking permits to address the problem.

 The Council directed staff to include three exceptions in the proposed ordinance to accommodate city residents and visitors who own RVs. Those are as follows: 

  • Yearly Residential Permit: City of Carlsbad residents who own an RV could apply for a yearly no-fee permit to park their vehicle on a public street at their residence for up to 72 hours. This would allow owners to load and unload vehicles before and after a trip. To reduce negative effects on neighbors, residents would be limited to four such three-day allowances within a 30-day period. Permit holders would be expected to abide by the terms of the permit at the risk of losing them.
  • Temporary 72 Hour Permit: Carlsbad residents could apply for a temporary permit to allow a guest to park an RV on a public street at their residence. This no-fee permit would allow a specific RV to park at the residence for up to three consecutive nights.
  • Commercial Property Permit: Hotels or motels could allow guests to park RVs next to these inns on public streets if the RV cannot be accommodated in the property’s parking lot. The city would issue each hotel and motel reusable permits that they can give to guests. This exception would apply only while the RV occupants are paying guests of the hotel or motel.

Jones said the vast majority of RV owners are law-abiding, and they recognize that one of the costs of owning an oversize vehicle includes storage, either on one’s private property or in a storage facility. He said the ordinance isn’t meant to discourage RV owners from visiting Carlsbad, and pointed out that South Carlsbad State Beach and private campgrounds have space for residents and tourists in RVs.

Based on today’s direction, city staff will introduce a draft ordinance to the City Council at an upcoming meeting. 

Following its introduction, the City Council will consider the ordinance for adoption at the meeting following its introduction.  Ordinances go into effect 30 days following adoption.  Meeting agendas are posted on the city website and at City Hall the Friday before a Tuesday evening meeting.

–City of Carlsbad

Do you think overnight RV parking in Carlsbad is an issue? Tell us in comments.

richard shapiro December 21, 2012 at 10:54 PM
Pam, you're just another moron not worth the skin it inhabits. You ignore the obvious, and address the silly. Go back to sleep or take more of your meds.
HomefreeCoalition December 29, 2012 at 08:20 AM
Great, so the homeowners a mile away have more. "Right" to this public street than anyone else, and can verify it with a permit? News flash about water's end. The Lamborghini driver is noisy, there is a couple on drugs who come out hammered to yell at an old lady with a trailer, people jump the fence, park outside the gate overnight for done reason and walk in, and they STORE their own vehicles on the street. The RVers do not cause any problems. Go complain about the Porsche dealership causing high speed traffic or the waste water stinky plant you decided to buy a house right next to.
richard shapiro January 18, 2013 at 10:23 PM
Stop, it's called a drivers license for something. It means you now how to drive and look around things. There are tons of oversized vehicles on the road not RVs, you wan't to ban all them? Stop being a dumb ass and support your fellow man to staying alive. for more on the obvious rock dumb truth of the matter, Rich , 760 681-4926
richard shapiro January 18, 2013 at 10:26 PM
Ooooh, you don't know "those people, those bogymans" who live in their RVs. Ooooh, you need to shrivel up and blow away from your preposterous fears. Stop being a dumb ass and support your fellow man to stay alive. Be the thing you say you are, a human being. Rich 760 681-4926
Dan Rice March 01, 2013 at 09:01 PM
Shapiro you are clearly the only abrasive dilusional moron commenting on this thread. Phil you can still park your RV in front of your daughters house just have her apply for the permit and move it a couple times if necessary. I own a small RV and have always found a safe responsible LEGAL location to park it. Home free coalition, the bottom line is an RV can definitely be a hazard. They are large and present a potential safety issue for those of us with children who may need to cross the street for various reasons. It's like letting a tree grow out of the street completely obstructing the view when parked for days or weeks at a time. The speeding Porsche can be ticketed and even the noisy Lamborghini has noise ordinance restrictions. There are definitely laws against being hammered on drugs and jumping my fence. The stinky waste water plant reference is just plain stupid!

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