Surprise! The spot in Houston where the most parking tickets have been issued over the last 2 years is . . . the place where people go to pay for their parking tickets. That would be at the surface parking lot for the city’s municipal courthouse at 1400 Lubbock St. (pictured at right), where a couple advantages accrue for illegal parkers: If you’ve got money with you when you return to find that bright green envelope tucked under your windshield wiper, paying up will be extremely convenient, and the parking while you go back in should be . . . uh, no extra charge!
Working from public data, Click2Houston reporter Jace Larson compiled the top 19 addresses cited in the 415,000 parking citations the city issued in 2012 and 2013, and highlighted 6 of them in his TV report. Of the top 19, only 6 are not directly adjacent to government or public-institution-related buildings; the vast majority of them are Downtown. Among the non-central parking-enforcement hotspots: an IRS service center and a couple of residential blocks near Montrose nightclubs. Here’s a list and map of the parking-enforcement hotspots, along with a few details from Larson’s report and observations of the map:
- 1400 Lubbock St., Downtown: 5,423 tickets. A lot outside the city’s Herbert W. Gee Municipal Courts Building (see photo at top). Visitors here have likely already received some sort of bad news, Larson notes.
- 400 Texas Ave., Downtown: 4,156 tickets. Park outside the Hard Rock Cafe at Bayou Place at night, when parking is not allowed, and you’re pretty certain to get a ticket.
- 4400 San Jacinto St., Downtown: 3,383 tickets. This is a city-owned surface parking lot lodged under the Southwest Fwy. at Fannin St. It’s next door to the Mexican Consulate.
- 900 Girard St., Downtown: 3,184 tickets. According to Larson’s reporting, this is a city-owned lot frequented by students attending UH-Downtown; it apparently offers regular lessons in parking-meter studies.
- 1600 California St., Montrose: 2,603 tickets. This residential block behind the Westheimer Curve, where private driveways and garages are scarce, requires parked cars to sport a special residential permit if they’re there after 5 pm. And night-duty officers are often on hand to hand out tickets. Plus: towing is available, too! A resident tells Larson that there’s at least one towing every night.
- 8300 Tybor Dr., Sharpstown: 2,370 tickets. This is outside an Internal Revenue Service building in southwest Houston. A ticket is likely cheaper than an audit, but is sure to be specially prized by visitors as an add-on.
- 1000 Texas Ave., Downtown: 2,271 tickets. The block east of the Rice Hotel, which also contains a surface parking lot, is popular among the ticket-bearing set.
- 1100 Texas Ave.: 2,011 tickets. When friendly hospitality staff members at the Magnolia Hotel advise you to put your car in a parking garage, they mean it.
- 1500 Kane St., Old Sixth Ward: 1,981 tickets. The lot on this block is convenient to the municipal courthouse and next to Knapp Chevrolet, which appears to offer its own wrecker service and tow lot.
- 300 Caroline St., Downtown: 1,922 tickets. In the heart of the county court complex downtown.
- 1400 Lubbock St., Downtown: 1,895 tickets. Strangely, this is the second time this address shows up in KPRC’s list. Larson is aware of the glitch, and promises to let us know as soon as he’s figured what went wrong.
- 500 Walker St., Downtown: 1,865 tickets. Right outside City Hall.
- 100 San Jacinto St., Downtown: 1,777 tickets. There’s a parking lot on this block, which is adjacent to the Harris County Criminal Court building at 1201 Franklin and a short jaunt from the Family Law Center at 1115 Congress St.
- 900 Franklin St., Downtown: 1,699 tickets. There’s a gated lot here, behind the Islamic D’awah Center; Mark Latigue’s new Gallo Rojo restaurant will be opening up across the street.
- 1900 Travis St., Downtown: 1,665 tickets. Right outside Metro’s Downtown Transit Center
- 1600 McKinney St., Downtown: 1,607 tickets. This block is adjacent to Discovery Green, near the George R. Brown Convention Center. Citations here may include cars parked on the surface lot where a new Marriott Marquis is about to go up.
- 400 Avondale St., Montrose: 1,443 tickets. One block north of Westheimer, where all the action is.
- 12300 North Freeway, Greenspoint: 1,438 tickets. Also known as the Greenspoint Mall.
- 200 Caroline St., Downtown: 1,427 tickets. Directly in front of the Harris County Civil Courthouse.
All told, these addresses account for only a little more than 10 percent of the total number of citations issued. A larger version of Click2Houston’s map is available here.
Got any additional intel on the ins and outs of parking at any of these locations? Please share them in the comments section below!
- Houston’s parking ticket hot spots [Click2Houston]
Photo: The Court Finder