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9 Resources for Solving Parking Challenges


The cover story of the April 2015 edition of PM magazine offers 10 strategies to ensure resiliency and vitality in downtowns. In 2013 I interned for a community planning agency researching ways to revitalize its downtown and learned that one of the biggest challenges concerns parking.  Here are 10 great resources to help you overcome those parking challenges:     

  1. Looking at previous successful solutions can be the best place to start: Missoula’s newest parking structure, Park Place , won the 2014 Awards of Excellence from the International Parking Institute.
  2. Read how to use the power of pricing in parking to solve some of the parking issues in your community.
  3. West Hollywood, California, is in the middle of constructing one of the first automated parking garages. Check out their progress in this article from February 2014.   West Hollywood expects that this innovative solution will solve the challenges of creating sufficient parking to meet needs.
  4. This Government Technology article outlines how you might use drones as a smart parking solution
  5. Do you have underutilized lots in your community? The “Pioneer Parking Lot Incentive Program”  from the city of Sandy, Oregon, was created to incentivize the use of its underused lot on Pioneer Boulevard.
  6. One of the newest solutions to overcome transportation issues is to implement car-sharing, like Uber and Zipcar. This Government Technology article predicts what this means for the future of parking.
  7. Parking departments are always updating and replacing parking meters.  What should you do with these retired meters?  The City of San Antonio, Texas, is converting them into donation stations for its homeless population.
  8. One of the biggest issues in a popular downtown is trying to find a parking space. Santa Monica, California, designed a parking app that provides real-time parking information to help residents find a parking space.
  9. On-street parking brings unique challenges to local governments.  Boston’s “Smart Parking” is using data to overcome these challenges.

How does your community overcome parking challenges? Post your comments below.

Douglas Shontz