Got a parking problem? It might look something like this:
Drivers cannot find parking as easily as they would like.
Cars are sitting unused on the street for long periods.
Neighbors fight a new development because it does not provide enough parking.
Parking in garages is more expensive than on street spaces. A new garage is built by the city, but no one parks there because it is too expensive and farther away.
Anger and rage: People fight, yell and scream over parking spaces. For a funny example watch this video
Wasted time: People circle the block cruising for parking-- cruising for parking angers drivers, increases traffic congestion and air pollution, and wastes gasoline and time.
What kind of a parking problem do you have?
Many times people say "there's just not enough parking" in a neighborhood. Usually the parking shortage is limited to specific parts of a neighborhood at specific times. If you think you have a parking problem, flesh it out by answering the following questions:
Where? - Close to theatres, popular shopping areas, schools, parks? Does parking free up as you get farther away from certain activity hot spots?
When?-Peak times of the week or year--the holiday Crush?
Who? - Residents, customers, students, employees? For each group, how long do they need the parking space and are they making the best use of valuable parking?
How long? - Are people staying in the parking space for 5 minutes, 5 hours, 5 days, 5 months or even longer? Studies show that the longer people will be staying in a location the further they are willing to walk. Pricing should encourage long term parkers to park in less desirable parking locations.
Got options? - Is your neighborhood walkable? Is there public transit? Is it safe to bike? Can people park farther away and walk?
At what price?- What is the price of parking in your neighborhood by location? Does the price vary by time of day and location? Is there either too much or too little parking available?
If all parking spaces are priced equally, then an individual will choose the space that is closest or most convenient to their destination and will likely stay in that space longer than they may need to. Studies show that the longer a person is staying in an area, the farther they will be willing to walk from a parking space to their ultimate destination. Parking rates should encourage long term parkers to park in less desirable parking locations to reserve the most convenient parking for short term visitors. Prices should also reflect the demand on those spaces based on the time of day or special events in the area.
By teasing out the issues above, solutions to parking problems can be narrowly targeted to address specific problems in specific places. On the next page of this site you will find a list of Good Parking Policies that can help to address your parking problem.
Parking as a Scarce Resource
Good Parking Policies
Returning Parking Revenues to the Community