The Village of Oak Park started putting plastic bags over parking meters after lunch, but it's not to signal that spaces are free for the rest of the day.
Village hall is warning motorists to not park on Oak Park's main thoroughfares. The community's snow parking ban went into effect at 10 p.m. last night. And as such, anyone parking on streets such as Oak Park Avenue, Lake or Ridgeland could be ticketed and towed.
As of yet, no one has been towed for violating the ban, said David Powers, village spokesman. But local police may need to call in O'Hare Towing as a final option if cars stay parked on those streets into the night.
"If need be, we will," Powers said. "That's kind of the tool of last resort. But if the snow becomes so bad and there are cars that are parked on designated snow routes, they may be ticketed and towed."
Motorists on residential streets need to follow the odd-even rule — from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., you must park on the even-numbered side of the street (east and north sides) on even dates and on the odd-numbered address side on the street (west and south) on odd dates. In commercial districts, the odd-even rule is in effect from midnight to 8 a.m. The village's overnight parking ban also applies from 2:30 to 6 a.m.
Powers said the village's main concern is the major streets, and those would be the most likely to see tow trucks.
"The focus tonight, because of the intensity of the storm and the way it's being predicted, is going to be on the main roads," he said.
Other snow routes include Augusta, Austin, Chicago, Division, Garfield, Harlem, Harrison, Jackson, Madison, North Avenue, Ridgeland, Roosevelt, and Wisconsin from Madison to the emergency entrance of Rush Oak Park Hospital. Parking is also prohibited on portions of Marion, Ontario and North Boulevard.