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Parking FAQ

Parking Information Logo

Park Smart, Park Happy Sarasota!


It is important to be aware of the City's parking rules and regulations so that You can be part of keeping our parking environment safe and happy.  There is a link below listing the city's parking ordinances, and their respective fines should you receive a citation. 

Many cities across the nation have different regulations that are consistent with their own geographical and cultural parking demands.  Aside from the most acknowledged violations such as time restrictions, parking on a sidewalk, and an expired license plate, below is a list of a few of the most commonly overlooked violations:

Back in parking is prohibited unless signage indicates it is allowed.  A vehicle's right front tire must be positioned next to the curb or edge of the street.
  • Where parking spaces are marked, you must parking in the designated space.  Vehicles are required to have the entire vehicle inside a designated space.  If the area is without designated spaces or No Parking signs, then parking is permitted so long as other ordinances are not violated.  Examples of the other ordinances to comply with are parking too close to an intersection, stop sign, where parking would block traffic or providing less than 10 feet clearance, driveways, etc. 

Tires out of line

  • Parking for a certain purpose on the right of way, other than to park a car: eg; Displaying a vehicle for sale, washing a vehicle or other commercial repairs, storing a vehicle on the street for more than 24 hours.
  • Parking in alleyways.  Alleyway parking is permitted for ACTIVE loading and unloading for up to 30 minutes.
  • Parking within 20 feet of a crosswalk, or 30 feet from a stop sign.
  • Obstructing or parking in Disabled parking space or access aisle ($250 fine).


The City of Sarasota is hopeful that your trip through our City is fun and trouble free.  By understanding the basic rules for parking, we all can enjoy coming to shop, dine, and experience the heartbeat of our fine city.

Parking Violation List and Fees



A link for the listing of most City of Sarasota Parking Violation Ordinances is above, along with the associated fine for violation.

Why is back-in parking prohibited? 

Back-in parking is prohibited in the City of Sarasota under Section 33-133 (2) of the city code.  All vehicles must park with their front end of the vehicle to the curb.  This ordinance aids other City and State laws which require enforcement personnel to insure all vehicles  utilizing city/state property display valid vehicle license plates.  Because the State of Florida only issues a single license plate for the rear of a vehicle, law enforcement can only perform this function efficiently with vehicles parked so their licenses plates are visible.  Unless otherwise posted, permitting a car to back in to park  must be "head-in" or with the passenger side wheel to the curb.  This is especially true for angled parking spaces, where pulling out of an angled space would cause a vehicle to operate in the face of on-coming traffic in the wrong lane of traffic.  Lastly, continuity of operations is a valuable tool in any parking lot, street parking or garage parking.  When drivers back-in to a parking space the vehicle stops beyond the intended parking spot.  When this is done, it requires all traffic come to a stop and provide sufficient space behind the car to allow a safe backing in maneuver.  When parking head-in, drivers back out of a space generally wait until traffic has cleared before maneuvering their vehicle in to the traffic lane.  Keeping a constant degree of expectation and fluid motion in a parking lot, street or parking garage is very important to all users as it relates to safety.


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