DEL MAR — For the fourth consecutive year, Del Mar will give shoppers a break by offering 12 days of free parking during the upcoming holiday season.
Del Mar Village Association, or DMVA, which sponsors the enforcement-free program, asked for 14 complimentary parking days beginning the weekend of Nov. 19, but city officials recommended starting the following weekend instead.
Visitors to the county’s smallest city can shop and dine without fear of a fine on 15th Street, under L’Auberge Del Mar and along Camino del Mar from Ninth to 15th Street every Saturday and Sunday from Nov. 26 through Jan. 1, 2012.
DMVA will provide bags to cover meters and signs on days when parking is not being enforced. Visitors and residents are strongly encouraged to check all signage as parking will continue to be enforced in the beach area and restricted zones.
City officials estimate a revenue loss of about $9,000, or $750 a day.
According to the staff report it isn’t known whether that amount is made up by an increase in sales tax from more visitors to the downtown area.
When the program began in 2008 the city offered only seven days of free parking but by last year it increased to 14.
The program is one of several holiday promotions sponsored by DMVA in conjunction with the city. Other events include visits from Santa Claus, a free concert and, on Dec. 4 from 2 to 5 p.m., a holiday wonderland featuring arts and crafts, music, performers, restaurant tastes, a children’s fun zone and the annual community tree lighting.