Starting this August, SDOT will make a number of adjustments to on-street parking rates and the hours of operation. We presented information at the City Council Transportation Committee today.
SDOT’s Performance-based Parking Pricing Program started in 2010, when the City Council directed us to set on-street parking rates according to a specific technical measurement. Our goal, written into the Seattle Municipal Code, is to achieve one to two spaces open and available throughout the day on each block. That way you can find parking more easily and may even be less frustrated looking for a spot.
Last spring, we conducted the 2013 Annual Paid Parking Study, and we are almost finished with the 2014 Study. We will use the 2014 study results as a final check before moving forward. The study results are used to see whether areas require a change to the rates or hours of operation. We compared each area’s daytime and evening occupancy—how full parking areas are at the highest daytime and evening hours—with the program’s target occupancy range of 70 percent to 85 percent.
A big parking change this year is our roll-out of new pay stations. If you tried one of the new demonstration pay stations in Belltown several months ago, you saw some interesting options. New machines will be able to set rates in a more refined way – by time of day–to acknowledge that occupancy varies between the morning, afternoon and evening. With time of day and area by area rates, we are tailoring rates to meet the City’s performance goal.
Based on the data results, there are three types of adjustments designed to start in August:
- Time of day – Pioneer Square (Core and Periphery) where there would be a $0.50/hour lower rate in the morning, and in the Core area (along 1st Ave S and 2nd Ave S, primarily), the afternoon rate would be $4.00/hour
- All-day rates – Six areas will see rate adjustments, three with lower rates, two with a rate increase, and the parking at Ballard Locks will be adjusted twice a year along the winter and summer seasons
- Extending hours of operation – Five areas will see extended paid parking hours until 8 PM: Ballard (Core and Periphery), Fremont, Green Lake, and 12th Avenue (near Seattle University). These areas experience overly full parking so need to have evening time period managed with payment, similar to other areas with nightlife activity.
More information will be posted in July about the installation schedule. We expect to start the installation in August for full-day rate and extended hours changes, with new pay stations scheduled to be installed in Pioneer Square in the fall.