Downtown Parking Management Update

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Back in 2014, the council-appointed Downtown Parking Task Force, which concluded a study in Fall 2013, brought forward 19 recommendations to improve the downtown parking management and supply.

The city council then split the recommendations into two phases, approving the implantation of Phase 1.  On Tuesday, staff will present council with an update.

Here is what they have found.

Recommendation 2: “Increase employee parking options: Expand X-eligible parking into Fourth & G garage.”  Status: on hold.  “This requires ongoing City funding in the ~$20,000 – $30,000/year range for 80-100 spaces.”  Completion: with funding, anytime.

“Improve Regal Lot for X-parking.”  Status: In Progress. “Staff developed CIP worksheet for Regal Lot to determine costs of improving the property for public parking (~$132k for 25 regular + 2 disabled spaces).” Completion: “While no funding is currently budgeted for work on this site, staff supports cleaning up the property and making productive use of the parcel, but is awaiting the completion of the Richards/Olive Corridor Study later this year prior to pursuing any site improvements. Staff will return to Council with a proposed project scope and budget for approval later this fiscal year.”

Recommendation 3: “Increase employee permit fees and streamline employee parking to single “X” permit.”  Status:  Completed. D & X permit consolidated in August 2013. Raised X permit fees to $120/yr in August 2015 (DPTF recommended $120 – $240/yr).

Recommendation 5: “Restrict delivery vehicle double-parking between the hours of 12 to 1:30 p.m. between Second to Fourth and D to G Streets.”  Status: In Progress. “Ordinance approved by Council on May 17, 2016.”  Completion: “Streets signs scheduled for installation in late July or early August.  Outreach to occur in the meantime.”

Recommendation 6: “Eliminate on-street green waste in the downtown.”  Status: Complete. Downtown rollout scheduled for Summer 2016.

Recommendation 7: “Extend enforcement to 8:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.”  Status: In Progress. “Will go into effect as soon as everything is running smoothly from the launch of the new License Plate Recognition System (9/29/16).” Completion: “Likely within a month of the go live date. Estimated November 2016.”

Recommendation 8: “Establish a tiered-fine citation system: $43/$86/$129 & thereafter.”  Status: Not Started. “Will be implemented when we have had time to work with the new License Plate Recognition system and determine if we want to use a Calendar year as the measurement for the tiered fines to be enforced.” Completion: January 2017.

Recommendation 9: “Upgrade parking enforcement technology.”  Status:  In Progress. “Contract for 3 License Plate Recognition cameras and parking management software approved by Council on 3/15/16.”  Completion: Tentatively going live on 9/29/16.

Recommendation 10: “Invest in electronic information systems. (i.e. mobile application integration with LPR/parking management software).”  Status: Not started. “Will be implemented when we have had time to work with the new system.  Completion: Possibly January – March 2017 timeframe.

Recommendation 11: “Develop transportation and parking alternatives campaign.”  Status: Complete. “GettingAroundDavis (GAD) website completed in August 2015. GAD flyers inserted into DBID business license renewals. GAD decals applied to several downtown parking wayfinding signs.”

Recommendation 12: “Collect quarterly parking occupancy and turnover data.”  Status: Complete/Ongoing. “Dating being collected semiannually due to cost efficiency. Collected data and brought report to BTSSC in Spring and Fall 2015 and Spring 2016.”

Recommendation 13: “Explore voluntary private shared-parking district.”  Status: In Progress.  “Recommendation has morphed into downtown valet parking. Progress was made to pilot ~25-30 private parking spaces for downtown restaurants. Effort has stalled between property owner and valet service provider.”  Completion: Spring/Summer 2016.

Recommendation 19: “Re-examine parking in-lieu fees and procedures.”  Status: In Progress. Consultant selection in-process. Completion: Jan/Feb 2017.

The second phase “has not yet been authorized and includes the remaining recommendations from the Downtown Parking Task Force.”

Recommendation 1: Establish paid parking in the southeast quadrant.

Recommendation 2: Increase downtown employee parking options (Not Started). Old North Davis. Consider Old East Davis for additional “X” permit parking.

Recommendation 4: Convert Amtrak to paid parking.

Recommendation 14: Provide van-accessible disabled parking upon resurfacing and/or metering.

Recommendation 15: Streetscape Improvements

Recommendation 16: Expand parking supply

Recommendation 17: Human resources

Recommendation 18: Improve transit options

Staff writes, “City Council action in Spring 2014 deferred Phase 2 with no specific timeframe for return. Staff intended to return upon completion and analysis of effects of Phase 1. However, given two years’ passing and renewed stakeholder interest in addressing downtown parking conditions, timing is appropriate to check-in with City Council, determine if the current course is still supported, if revisions are preferred, and consider appropriate next steps.”

—David M. Greenwald reporting

About The Author

David Greenwald is the founder, editor, and executive director of the Davis Vanguard. He founded the Vanguard in 2006. David Greenwald moved to Davis in 1996 to attend Graduate School at UC Davis in Political Science. He lives in South Davis with his wife Cecilia Escamilla Greenwald and three children.

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12 Comments

  1. The Pugilist

    This is useless.  We need real capacity upgrades for peak hours.  Another parking garage would be good.  The other day, I was trying to park in the G St garage and there was literally nothing available.

  2. Barack Palin

    I must be lucky, I always find downtown parking.  It might require an extra trip around the block every once in a while but I find a spot.

  3. Tia Will

    I do not believe that we need more parking. What is needed are fewer cars in competition for available spots. We bemoan our city’s financial status and yet refuse to do what many, many other cities have done which is to adopt widespread use of paid parking. I would have no problem with exceptions for those of limited mobility. Or even exemptions for those of low income who could acquire special plates just as those with medical conditions do.

    I also agree with BP. When I lived at a greater distance from downtown, I rarely had any difficulty parking at all. Of course, I did not consider it a parking failure if I had to walk a couple of blocks. Now, since I can walk from home to downtown, I have zero parking problem.

  4. quielo

    I go downtown almost every day and while I bike most times when I do drive I never have trouble finding a place though perhaps my standards are different than other people’s. I don;t support a “low income” exemption as anyone who can afford a car can afford to pay for parking.

    1. Barack Palin

      Quielo, I remember you stated that you’re fairly new to town.  This has been going on for years, we have the usual vocal minority that’s been pushing for paid downtown parking and they try and portray finding a parking spot a lot worse than it actually is.

      1. quielo

        Merchants usually like to shorten the parking intervals through either paid parking or 30-60 minute free spots. Right it’s two hours in most places which is good for restaurants but bad for shops. If you go for paid parking expect to see an upsurge in fraudulent handicapped placards.

        1. South of Davis

          quielo wrote:

          > If you go for paid parking expect to see an upsurge in fraudulent

          > handicapped placards.

          When I worked on Mission Street in SF years ago it was rare to see a car that did NOT have a handicapped placard on it.

          Once parking gets expensive it is easy to sort of legally get a placard since everyone has “something” wrong with them and there is always a MD that will OK a placard for a guy with a knee that hurts a little after years of football.

          http://sfist.com/2014/11/17/san_franciscos_disable_placard_abus.php

        2. Barack Palin

          Very interesting SOD

          50%: The percent of cars parked downtown that had disabled placards hanging from their mirrors, according to a 2008 SFMTA study

          And the number of disabled placards in SF have doubled since that date so I wonder what percentage that would be today.

          1. David Greenwald

            Is this a problem that is generalizable to all venues with paid parking or are there specifics that make it a bigger problem in SF? I’ve lived in a lot of places with paid parking over the years and haven’t heard of this as a problem in any of them.

      2. Tia Will

        BP

        I would encourage caution with that word “they”. I have just stated that I have no problem with parking, nor did I prior to moving to OED, but I have consistently called for paid parking as a form  of user based revenue source for the city which could be used for infrastructure repair and maintenance such as bike paths, sidewalks….and yes…..even roads.

  5. Matt Williams

    Recommendation 8: “Establish a tiered-fine citation system: $43/$86/$129 & thereafter.”  Status: Not Started. “Will be implemented when we have had time to work with the new License Plate Recognition system and determine if we want to use a Calendar year as the measurement for the tiered fines to be enforced.” Completion: January 2017.
    Not that anyone has asked, but using any specific year is incredibly short-sighted in my opinion.  Since the whole system is computerized, the far easier and far preferable method would be to have a historical parking ticket “drop off” the system after 12 months (or some other agreed to timeframe).  For example, if you got a second parking ticket one year and a day after your first parking ticket, the fine would be $43.  Anything less than a year and the fine would be $86 for the second ticket.
     
    Recommendation 9: “Upgrade parking enforcement technology.”  Status:  In Progress. “Contract for 3 License Plate Recognition cameras and parking management software approved by Council on 3/15/16.”  Completion: Tentatively going live on 9/29/16.
    This can’t happen soon enough.  Recognition of license plates will be the single most effective method for eliminating UCD student commuter parking in both residential neighborhoods and downtown.
     
    Recommendation 10: “Invest in electronic information systems. (i.e. mobile application integration with LPR/parking management software).”  Status: Not started. “Will be implemented when we have had time to work with the new system.  Completion: Possibly January – March 2017 timeframe.
    Here too, this can’t happen soon enough. I would add integration with the UCD TAPS system database of student license plates, so that the recognition cameras will be able to instantaneously identify UCD student cars cannibalizing residential neighborhood parking spaces.
    I also believe that the license plate recognition database will support the elimination of “parking space specific” residential neighborhood parking, and go to “vehicle specific” residential neighborhood parking.  That will have two immediate benefits.  (1) it will mean that “lettered” spaces won’t sit empty when unused by the neighborhood, and (2) it will mean mini-dorm residents will have to register all their vehicles to avoid getting parking tickets, which will help the City get a better handle on the impact of mini-dorms on the quality of life in Davis.

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