Overlay

Some people read self-help books to change their lives.

I read 600+ page books on parking.

I haven’t had the time to write as fully as I would like about parking in the city of Worcester, but I hope I’m not the only one who has noticed how much this topic comes up at City Council meetings and in the news.

Whether it’s Worcester State neighbors requesting resident-only parking on their streets, or Worcester State creating a huge parking lot on Goddard Memorial Drive (in order to shuttle students in), or a residential developer near CSX proposing more parking spots than zoning requires, parking’s a big issue.

At tomorrow night’s City Council meeting, there’s going to be a discussion of a proposal to create a new overlay district to make parking requirements more flexible in downtown and its environs.  (You can read the full memo here, and a Telegram article about opposition here [$].)

My views on parking have evolved quite a bit in the past couple of years, and may evolve still more in the future.

If you have time, I recommend you read this article from Los Angeles Magazine about Donald Shoup and his ideas on parking.  If you feel that more parking is essential, or that paying for parking is rarely a good idea, I especially recommend reading the article.  You may just find that your mind is changed.

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2 thoughts on “Overlay

  1. Brad Wyatt says:

    Solution – just eliminate the Library Parking lot.

    Just kidding.

  2. Kris says:

    I enjoy your blog and am only now offering a comment. I recently finished reading Jeff Speck’s new book, WALKABLE CITIES. It’s very accessible and enjoyable, and he points out that inflexible parking requirements (especially in city centers) are one of the leading reasons why cities are dead. It’s just too expensive for people to live there or rent office or shop space. And that cities with on-street, metered parking have vibrant downtowns. I would love to see Worcester try these ideas out for a year or two and see what the effects are.

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