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Link light rail station neighborhood parking and restricted parking zones (RPZs)

 Updated July 27, 2015

Business RPZ Program made permanent

On September 3, 2013, the City Council passed Ordinance 124265, amending SMC 11.16.316 and making permanent the pilot program allowing neighborhood businesses and their employees to continue to purchase restricted parking zone (RPZ) permits near the Link Light Rail stations in Seattle.

SDOT completed a robust outreach effort to the affected communities in the spring of 2013, specifically to gauge opinions regarding the RPZ business permit program. Based upon this and findings from 2010, 2011 and 2012 data, SDOT recommended making permanent the issuance of RPZ permits to eligible businesses and institutions in the Sound Transit Central Link light rail station areas. As required by the pilot legislation, SDOT provided this final report to Council in May 2013.

Parking study results

SDOT collected on-street parking data each year since the light rail RPZs opened in 2009, to understand how parking is being used, whether conditions have changed since 2009, and to see how the business permit pilot is working (whether it is outweighing residential parking needs). Read the reports here:  

Questions?  Contact Ruth Harper at (206) 684-4103 or

2015 permit renewals & fees

If you are a business in a Light Rail RPZ and wish to apply for or renew your RPZ permits, CLICK HERE to download application information. Businesses do not receive renewal notices in the mail, and must reapply every two years.

If you are a RESIDENT and received an RPZ permit between August 2013 and now, you’ll be getting a renewal notice in the mail about a month before your permit expires with instructions for how to renew. Residents only can renew online. This list shows when each zone will expire:


Zone #


Beacon Hill


August 31, 2017

Rainier Beach


August 31, 2017

Columbia City


October 31, 2015



October 31, 2015

Mt. Baker


December 31, 2015

Each decal is $65, a guest permit is $30, and a low-income permit is available for $10. Learn more about RPZ permit fees.

Want to be removed from your RPZ?

You can request to remove your side of the street from the RPZ using this Zone Removal Request form (pdf) or Zone Removal Request form (.docx)

Questions? Contact Ruth Harper at (206) 684-4103 or


SDOT and Sound Transit want to ensure that Link light rail provides great transit service without adversely impacting on-street parking spaces needed by businesses and residents. To do so, the two agencies started working with neighborhoods in April 2008 to design parking regulations around each station. The regulations are intended to prevent commuters and other transit riders from using the on-street parking spaces needed by people living and working in each station area neighborhood.

As of July 20, 2009 restricted parking zones (RPZs) have been in effect in the Beacon Hill, Mount Baker, Columbia City, Othello, and Rainier Beach station areas (since Link light rail trains started running).  SDOT and Sound Transit’s joint outreach to establish the zones aligned with SDOT’s RPZ policy review and an outcome of the effort was development of a four-year pilot program to allow employees of station-area businesses to have RPZs permits.

There was general support for the pilot because it provided a unique solution to unique conditions including the input of many small business owners that they used their person vehicles for business purposes.  SDOT made a mid-pilot report to Council in July 2011.

In 2009, two permits and one guest pass were available to each household and business at no cost, to ease the transition to new parking rules. Beginning in 2011, residents and businesses are responsible for permit costs.

SDOT studied on-street parking in the SODO and Stadium station areas, but conditions did not warrant an RPZ.

Station Area off-street parking rules

Click here to learn about temporary use of existing off-street parking lots in the station areas for long-term parking.

Helpful Contact Information

  • SDOT’s RPZ Permit counter: (206) 684-5086
  • Broken or damaged signs: (206) 684-ROAD
  • To report illegal parking to the Seattle Police Department: (206) 625-5011
  • General Sound Transit information: (206) 398-5000 or email
  • Call Sound Transit’s language lab hotline at 1 (800) 823-9230 to communicate in a language other than English.

Contact Us:

Questions or comments? Contact project manager Ruth Harper, (206) 684-4103, or

Frequently Asked Questions

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