Parking reformers have some educatin' to doDCist arguing that we should run a freeway between Dupont Circle and Adams Morgan, though some still dream about drawing lines through the city.
The Jane Jacobs of parking policy, Donald Shoup, published his groundbreaking book in 2005, giving us 44 fewer years to educate people about the fallacy of free parking. That's why DCist's article yesterday about parking debates in Columbia Heights and the ballpark district generated comments like these:
I would like to see new apartments, offices, and commercial buildings built with additional below-ground pay/free-with-validation parking lots for visitors. These public lots should be accessible via separate entry gates so that residents and employees that have assigned parking would be unaffected by the lines, and enter quickly and directly through private entrances.A city where everyone drives from the garage under their apartment to the garage under their office and then to the garage under their grocery store is a vision for urban life, but it's a lousy one. Free parking encourages driving, but someone is paying the costs. In the case of stores offering free validation, it's higher prices charged by the store, only you pay that price whether you drive there or not. In the case of apartment buildings, it's adding $30,000 or more to the cost of the units, making everyone's housing more expensive.
This opinion was alive and well at last week's parking working group meeting for the zoning review, where Marilyn Simon of Friendship Heights wants the zoning code to require larger parking garages under commercial buildings and mandate validated parking from all stores.
Fortunately, her views were a minority, but a lot of people—
- DC has almost no white residents without college degrees. (It's a different story for black residents.)
- What's so great about the Purple Line, anyway?
- I don't care what some people say: DC has great transportation options.
- The biggest beneficiaries of housing subsidies? The wealthy.
- Clearly we need to have more happy hours in Prince George's
- Metro badly needs culture change, everyone agrees. Can it pull it off?
- Does DC want boring architecture? Sort of.