This post originally appeared on Orphan Road.
Nothing makes people crazy like taking away their god-given right to free parking:
Their argument was a simple one: Consumers, without convenient, free one-hour parking on N 34th, would pass up PCC and do their grocery shopping somewhere else. Never mind that PCC provides more than 80 free 90-minute parking spots immediately beneath its Fremont location. [emphasis added]
So to recap, parking regulations in Seattle apparently work like this:
- Developer proposes new retail development
- Neighborhood residents, scared about losing free street parking, demand tons of below-ground parking
- Building is built with tons of below-ground parking, adding significant development costs, which are passed on to business and residents in the form of higher rents
- Shoppers, many of whom are the neighborhood residents mentioned in step 2, don’t use below-ground parking because it’s inconvenient
- Street parking fills up, because there’s this new retail establishment and all this free parking in front of it!
- City proposes installing meters, to manage the parking so that shoppers don’t have to circle endlessly looking for spots
- Some residents (and shoppers, and business owners) demand that the parking remain free
- Parking gets so bad that people start shopping elsewhere
- Developer proposes new retail development…