Update: This morning the DJC reports that Sound Transit real estate people have toured the facility and are considering buying it. The six-storey garage is at 2460 Fourth Ave. S and has 970 stalls. The garage is likely to cost more than $20 million.
Original post published Jan 29 at 9:35pm is below:
The DJC ran a piece about parking around Light Rail station, and the rules changes that the city is looking into. It’s easy to figure out what to do in Southeast Seattle: residential permits and only short stays for those without permits. But what can be done with Sodo? Here’s the gist:
Few people live in that neighborhood [Sodo], but there are numerous small businesses, many of them industrial. The Manufacturing Industrial Council estimates that between 40,000 and 60,000 people work in Sodo.
One problem is that commuters are already parking in Sodo and taking the bus, according to SDOT planner Dante Taylor, who has been going door-to-door in the neighborhood collecting feedback on parking proposals since December.
Most of the local businesses don’t have parking lots, and rely on street parking.
Almost 1,300 parking spaces around the sports stadiums will be lost during Alaskan Way Viaduct construction, … Another 50 spaces will be lost to construction on state Route 519, … another 200 spaces will go away temporarily while First Avenue South is paved and Spokane Street viaduct construction … The city estimates there are 4,500 parking spots in Sodo now.
Some employers in Sodo want SDOT to issue parking permits for their employees.
With more commuters likely to be parking in Sodo once the train starts running, some people are wondering why SDOT doesn’t buy the post office parking lot, which is very close to the Sodo train station and is up for sale.
To support a “pedestrian and transit-friendly environment,” the city has a policy that discourages parking lots, Shepard said.
“Parking lots attract cars but they are not always good neighbors,” Shepard said.
You can learn more about the City’s light rail parking designs here. I’m going to look into which parking lot is the post office lot mentioned in the DJC article, but you can see the station here, and notice there’s a Post Office facility directly to the west of it. I kind of torn. On the one hand, I think a park-and-ride in the Sodo area, especially one very near to the Spokane Street Viaduct, is a great idea if the number of spots is sufficiently large to attract riders. On the other hand, that lot could be a great candidate for some TOD office space.
So what do you think about permit parking for workers? How about a park-and-ride at Sodo station?