Photo courtesy of Jean-Luc Koelemeijer

Last week we posted Jean-Luc’s confusing photo of an electric vehicle charging station in Petaluma. Is it just for handicap vehicles, or is it just handicap accessible?  We now have all the details from Diane Ramirez, the city project manager who brought new charging stations to the Keller Street Garage.

The garage has two new stations, both of which are labeled “Electric Vehicle Only.” One is wall-mounted and has a cord long enough to reach two parking spots. The other is a bollard installed low enough that someone in a wheelchair would have clear access to it when parked in the handicap parking spot. Electric vehicle owners can sometimes use the bollard from an adjacent spot, but the parking space in the photo is reserved for cars with tags.

These charging stations were installed with money from a one-year stimulus grant that ends Dec. 31, Ramirez said. “We have the option to keep and maintain them.”

Question: Are cars supposed to be able to drive in the downtown Santa Rosa Transit Mall? It used to be that private citizens (not cops or city vehicles) could not operate there, but now all cars can drive through all the time, and the City Bus employees don’t seem to be stopping them. — Megan

Answer: Drive through that transit mall at your own risk, Megan. Just because it’s possible to drive down Second Street doesn’t mean it’s legal.

Sgt. Mike Numainville of the Santa Rosa Police Department’s Traffic Division provides this answer: It is a violation for vehicles to drive through the transit mall since there are posted signs prohibiting it.  This would be a violation of 21461(a) CVC, which carries a base fine of $238, and then you start adding court fees.