RVers who plan to picnic in the parking lot at Moonlight Beach next summer may want to rethink those plans.
The Encinitas City Council unanimously voted last week to enact new summertime restrictions along Coast Highway 101 and in the city’s beach parking lots.
Under the new rules, RVs that are longer than 25 feet or wider than 9 feet will be banned from parking in the lots at Moonlight, Swami’s, Grandview and Beacon’s from the Friday before Memorial Day through Labor Day weekend.
They also will be barred from parking on the edge of the coastal highway adjacent to Cardiff State Beach.
And, people won’t be allowed to fill up these popular parking spots with lawn chairs, barbecue grills and other party equipment during busy summer months; the parking spots are for vehicles only, the council decided.
“With parking being at such a premium (during the summer), when you’ve got someone taking up three or four spaces, it’s really tough, especially when you see families circling around trying to find a parking spot,” city Parks, Recreation & Cultural Arts Director Jennifer Campbell said as she explained the proposed rules to the City Council.
The new rules won’t ban all RVs, just what the city terms “oversized” RVs, which take up more than one standard city parking spot. A “mid-size” RV typically is less than 25 feet long and can fit in a regular parking spot,a city staff report notes and Mayor Catherine Blakespear stressed.
Councilwoman Jody Hubbard said she was pleased with the new proposal, but wished it went further, suggesting that the council ought to ban people from dropping off trailers in parking spots and then coming back for them later. She said she has seen people do this in the beach parking lots.
Campbell said the city will also install new signage in its beach areas, detailing the new restrictions.
— Barbara Henry is a freelance writer for The San Diego Union-Tribune