by Max Darrow

BURLINGAME (KPIX) — The city of Burlingame has a plan to allow business owners to turn temporary parklets into permanent parklets but it’ll come with a price tag.

Operators will have to pay $1,500 in rent annually and then another $300 per month in cleaning fees. The total cost to operate a parklet would be around $5,100 per year.

“I agree with what the council is doing in regards to the $1,500 fee but I don’t agree on the cleaning fee,” said John Kevranian, with the Broadway-Burlingame Business Improvement District. “I think, at $5,100 a year including the cleaning fee, some parklet owners will give them up.”

Up to this point, businesses have not been charged to use the public sidewalk space and parking spaces in front of their property.

“Having the parklets is huge for our business,” said Karen Lyons, owner of Bonne Sante Broadway. “I think the new fees will be really devastating for us. We’re just trying to catch up to where we were.”

There are currently 43 parklets in Burlingame that occupy 88 parking spaces, according to city figures.

During the city council meeting this week, the vice mayor explained they want to ensure the parklets are actively being used and are not unnecessarily taking up valuable parking spaces.

Kevranian says he doesn’t think that’s really the case in his district.

“We don’t want to waste the parking spots where parklets are but we don’t have many parklets where they’re not being used. The majority are being utilized,” he said.

This would run as a one-year pilot program, starting sometime in early 2022. There is the possibility that the cleaning fee could be reduced eventually.