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:

  1. Developer proposes new retail development
  2. Neighborhood residents, scared about losing free street parking, demand tons of below-ground parking
  3. 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
  4. Shoppers, many of whom are the neighborhood residents mentioned in step 2, don’t use below-ground parking because it’s inconvenient
  5. Street parking fills up, because there’s this new retail establishment and all this free parking in front of it!
  6. City proposes installing meters, to manage the parking so that shoppers don’t have to circle endlessly looking for spots
  7. Some residents (and shoppers, and business owners) demand that the parking remain free
  8. Parking gets so bad that people start shopping elsewhere
  9. Developer proposes new retail development…

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