CSG Policy Director Cheryl Cort, along with Greater Greater Washington’s David Alpert and Alex Block of the Downtown BID talked D.C. parking policy with NewsTalk’s Bruce DePuyt on December 3.
As David Alpert said in his recap on Greater Greater Washington:
DePuyt phrased the issue well early in the discussion: the simple challenge is that not everyone can park in a place like downtown. Some people need to drive, but everyone can’t, so the basic policy debate is how to allocate limited spaces among different people in the “fairest” way, whatever that is (special set-asides for groups like residents or those with disabilities, market forces, and/or our current policy, allocating based on who will tolerate the most circling to find a spot or who gets lucky).
If DC changes its policies in this realm, it’s not about “discouraging” people from driving; as a number of you pointed out in the comments on some recent articles, it’s DC’s growth, not a government conspiracy, that’s making parking scarcer. All the government can do is change the way it manages the available space, for better or worse.
Block also noted that businesses in the BID don’t expect they can gain customers by increasing parking, because it’s not practical. Instead, what they want is a good parking “experience”: making it easier to find where the empty spaces are, smoother methods of payment, etc.
To learn more and get involved on CSG’s work on D.C. parking policy, please consider joining Pro-DC.