Though the City of Foster City that no event parking would be allowed in The MarketPlace/Metro Center parking lot during its 4th of July festivities, and that a strict one-hour time limit would be enforced for those that parked there, more than 50 car owners are furious that their cars were towed from the MarketPlace lot during the City's celebration at Leo Ryan Park.
CBS' ConsumerWatch program is reporting it has been fielding a multitude of complaints from car owners that said the shopping center's parking rules were not adequately advertised.
Also, many are complaining that, when they parked there that day, they were actually patronizing MarketPlace/Metro Center businesses, not walking over to the celebration - yet their cars were towed anyway.
However, representatives for the MarketPlace told ConsumerWatch the special restrictions for the 4th of July holiday were put in place four years ago.
In addition, a representative from Equity Office Properties, which owns the MarketPlace shopping center, said "prominent signs were posted" around the shopping center that day.
One man, named Shawn Kung - whose car was one of a whopping 53 cars towed from the shopping center that day - is complaining to ConsumerWatch that the signs were not clear or prominent, and that he was eating at one of the restaurants in the shopping center when his car was towed, not hanging out at Leo Ryan Park for the festival.
Kung told ConsumerWatch his car was towed all the way to Redwood City, and that he was charged $435 to get it back - the towing company added on extra charges because it was a holiday, he said.
Lt. Frank Derris of the Foster City Police Department told ConsumerWatch that, while the situation was a pain for the department - phones were ringing off the hook all day from people wondering where their cars had gone, or thinking they had been stolen, he said - the operators of The MarketPlace are free to change their parking policies whenever they like.
Read the full story on CBS' ConsumerWatch website here.
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