Parking can either support or handicap walking, depending on where it is placed and how it is managed. Parked cars do provide a barrier between walkers and cars, and where a sidewalk buffer is not possible, or not desirable such as in busy retail areas, parked cars are a good. But the imagined need to preserve parking can also harm walkers when it is used to prevent crosswalk daylighting and curb extensions, or to argue against sidewalk widening. Where is works, parking is a good thing, where it does not work, it is a bad thing.

Policies:

  • Parking in such a way as to block a crosswalk, whether marked or unmarked, will be a top priority of parking enforcement, and will be added to the 311 app and website, and recognized by 311 operators.
  • Since surface parking creates more distance between walkable destinations, parking minimums will be eliminated everywhere, parking maximums may be established, and the overall size of surface parking lots will be strictly limited. Big box stores and malls, where they exist, will break up expanses of parking with walkable safe routes, including continuous safe paths from streets to entrances for people who walk. 
  • Though on-street parking (parallel, diagonal, and separated) may create a safer and more comfortable environment for walking and bicycling, preservation of existing parking will never be prioritized over installing or widening sidewalks where needed. 
  • Divert parking revenues beyond those necessary to maintain the program to the neighborhoods from which the income came (Shoup, Parking Benefits District), expended solely on walking infrastructure improvement within 1000 feet of the meter. Lower income areas without meters would be funded at the same level with other funding. 

About Dan Allison

Dan Allison is a Safe Routes to School Coordinator in the Sacramento area. Dan dances and backpacks, as much as possible.

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walkability

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